Calling all car lovers! Minnesota Cars and Coffee is back -- just not in Chanhassen.
The popular monthly car show has been held at the Chanhassen Automotorplex for nine years. Suddenly, after the April show, the City wanted some changes.
“This was out of our hands,” says Tyler Christopherson, one of the organizers of the show.
Christopherson and his business partner, Luis Fraguada, say they’ve known for years that they were outgrowing the space, and that a move was likely, but city officials forced their hand early. We went to the City Manager to find out what the problem was with the event.
“We had illegal parking up and down a variety of different roads. People parking on private property, trespassing, and we had a 112 calls for service based on that four-hour event in the morning,” Todd Gerhardt tells us.
Gerhardt admits there weren’t those problems in any of the Cars for Coffee events leading up to April.
So does Minnesota Cars and Coffee think there’s more to the decision?
Yes. They believe the newly opened Paisley Park might have something to do with it. The City says, not so.
Todd Gerhardt says Chanhassen makes no money off of ticket sales or parking. The only revenue he claims Chanhassen gets from Paisley Park is property taxes.
Chanhassen officials wanted Cars and Coffee to limit attendees to just 2,500 and to either charge a ticket price or have people register for the event ahead of time.
That, organizers say, would have killed the spirit of the event.
“It’s a free show. We always wanted it to be free to enter, free to spectate, so selling tickets was not an option. Busing people in from EP was not an option,” says Fraguada.
So, onward and upward. Minnesota Cars and coffee has found itself a new location at Canterbury Park.
”Our footprint is going to be four times the size so we’re going to have two to three times as many show cars there,” says Christopherson.
“We have twice the room to park cars, we have spectator parking right by where we’re going to have the show,” says Fraguada.
They are also adding food trucks to the event -- something guests have been asking for. The first event is June 3 from 8 to 11 a.m. and will continue at Canterbury the first Saturday of every month until October.
More information is available on the Cars and Coffee website.