The Granddaddy of Corvette shows turned 48 last week in Indianapolis. After a delay of roughly 2.5 months due to the coronavirus, the 2020 Bloomington Gold show was held at the Lucas Oil Stadium in downtown Indy. This was a year of firsts for Bloomington. It was the first ever Bloomington event to be held at an indoor venue, the first time it was held in September, and the first time they’ve judged restomod Corvettes.
With the COVID-related move to September, the show had a decidedly different look this year. The usual 3-day event was shortened to 2 jam-packed days. All the traditional driving events like the autocross, IMS track laps, and drive-through awards ceremony were scrubbed, though the local Camaro club did lead an informal road tour on Saturday night.
All that said, the signature Bloomington events of Survivor, Gold, and Benchmark judging still took place. 60 or so Corvettes from 1954 through 2007 were evaluated on how well they resembled Typical Factory Production. On Saturday, restomod Corvettes took the judging field for the very first time. The swanky Gold Collection assembled another drool-worthy collection of Corvettes, this year paying tribute to one Zora Arkus Duntov. Likewise, the Camaro special collection showcased some of the best Camaros around. Bloomington Gold Members still received all their usual weekend perks as well. In addition, all attendees had the chance to take a behind the scenes tour of the Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts. Friday afternoon saw Corvette historian and Hall of Famer Jerry Burton give a short, off-the-cuff talk on the life of Zora Duntov.
You can’t have a good car show without vendors. Depending on what you were looking for, it could have potentially been found outside in the swap meet area or downstairs in the vendor corral. Anything from engine blocks to tee shirts could be found on the property.
All the show cars were displayed indoors on the arena concourse. Upon entering the south entrance of the Lucas Oil Stadium, attendees were greeted by the Gold Collection to their left and the Certification cars to their right. The later models (C4, C5, and C6) were located just inside the door and the older generations further down the concourse to the right. The long row of 1967 Corvettes was one of the best line ups we’ve ever seen. Picture nearly every color combo you can think of parked side-by-side-by-side.
Nearly everything this year has been affected in some way by the coronavirus pandemic and Bloomington Gold was no different. Between the new dates, 2-day show, the new location, and ongoing health concerns it was a noticeably smaller, more intimate event. We had the chance to stop and talk with more folks that we can remember. Moving a huge, national show on short notice is a monumental task. The Bloomington Staff did a great job keeping everyone safe throughout the weekend. Masks were required throughout the venue and sanitizing stations were located all over place. Judges were masked up and signage throughout the show reminded everyone how to stay safe. This was clearly not a record-setting weekend for the Bloomington team, but we salute them for deciding to hold the show amid the current global situation. They very easily could have just canceled and said see you all next year. They showed us that we can still enjoy our hobby and stay safe at the same time. We’ll have some more from Bloomington Gold in the coming days, but for now, enjoy our gallery of the event below – no mask required.
Photos by Steve Burns
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