Last year’s Old Timer’s Day will certainly be hard to top. Selbyville town officials estimated this week that roughly 2,000 attended the festivities, eating, playing games, walking the town and admiring the more than 180 entrants in the Classic Car and Truck Show, which included antique cars, trucks, relic police cars and emergency vehicles.
The 50th annual event last year was the largest ever — a sort of resurrection for the event, which was once, and has become again, a Selbyville staple.
“It was amazing last year,” said Debbie McCabe, a Selbyville administrator who organizes the event, and has been doing so for the 51st edition since January, with fellow town employee and police officer Lt. Robert Reed. The two partnered on the event last year, as well.
McCabe said this week that last year’s event had exceeded all expectations and what were likely cautious predictions. She added, though, “This year, I expect almost the same thing.”
McCabe and Reed said Monday that the planning stage is reaching its finalities after roughly six months and the duo, which is credited with organizing the effort to organize the event, is now only awaiting the 51st annual Old Timer’s Day, like everyone else.
The day will begin at 9 a.m. next Saturday, June 16, with opening ceremonies, featuring Town Mayor Clifton Murray and council, as well as yet-unidentified dignitaries, at the town’s Railroad Museum. Old Timer’s Day this year will feature even more activities than last, Reed and McCabe said this week, boasting magical performances for the children in attendance, pony rides and games, including a baseball toss and a moon bounce.
Other entertainment will include live performances by Georgetown-based singer Cathy, a 50/50 raffle to benefit the Old Timer’s Day fund and of, course, the awe-inspiring and well-attended car show.
Participants in the show will include owners of cars from 1972 or earlier, police officers from departments across the state with well-aged vehicles and emergency responders with competing antiques. They will line the classics up and down Church Street, which will be closed for the event.
In fact, more participants had filed the free registration by early this week than did by the same time last year, according to McCabe. Pre-registration is available at Selbyville Town Hall. Prospective participants can also register from 9 a.m. to noon the day of the event. Trophies — which will include the 6-foot Mayor’s Choice trophy, 30 others for the top 30 of the day and other awarded in specialty categories — will be distributed at 3 p.m.
For years, Old Timer’s Day prospered as the town’s signature event, attracting people from across the county and state to tour the small town. But more recently, the event lost its stellar reputation and suffered from neglect.
McCabe and Reed credit its current resurgence largely to the car show. However, the event, while a prime fund-raising option, is not a fundraiser for the town and is instead a way to show off the town to visitors and prospective future homeowners.
The town does not even charge an entrance fee, only recycles money made on the midday raffle into the Old Timer’s Day Fund to help pay for next year’s event. Expenses this year included securing entertainment and paying for a television advertising spot on WMDT-47 that began Monday.
Now, with everything running smoothly and officials counting down the days, this year’s event only has the legacy of the last with which to contend.
“It’s just something to get people to come to the town to show people what we have to offer,” Reed said. “It was the largest that it has ever been last year. And we’re hoping it’s larger this year.”
Pre-registration forms to participate in the Class Car and Truck Show are available at Selbyville Town Hall. The show will likely again be the highlight the 51st annual Old Timer’s Day, an annual staple in the small town, which will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 16, and feature everything from magic to pony rides. Selbyville officials estimated this week that roughly 2,000 people attended the 50th annual event last year — the biggest ever, they said.