Back to the Fifties Weekend returns to Minnesota State Fairgrounds

Over 12,000 classic cars and trucks expected

Mark Freie
June 21, 2019 - 9:35 am

Mark Freie


Summer is underway with the 46th annual MSRA Back to the Fifties weekend.

Over 12,000 classic cars and trucks from 1964 and older are filling the Minnesota State Fairgrounds.

Whether you're a car enthusiast, or just looking for something to do, crowds will enjoy seeing the colorful cars, hearing the engines roar, and talking with prideful owners.

Tom Quinn, who lives near Como Park, drove his candy apple red 1964 Corvair convertible. It's a car he had in high school, but gave up when he went on to serve in the United States military during the Vietnam War. Quinn was able to purchase a car similar to the one from his earlier days and has enjoyed working on it ever since.

"It's a work in progress," Quinn said. "One year you do this, one year you do that. It still needs a lot of work, but it's getting there."

Quinn, like thousands of other car enthusiasts, enjoys the Back to the Fifties weekend and has been coming back for the past 12 years. He takes time to get to the fairgrounds early and watch the cars pull in.

"I like cars from the mid-1950's, the big tanks, and the land yachts," he said. "I'd get one of my own, but they're just too dang big!"

Aside from the cars, hundreds of vendors, crafters, and swappers fill the fairgrounds. There's even live music Friday and Saturday evening at the Main Bandshell and at the West End Market.

Dave Johnson, from South St. Paul, brought his powder blue 1964 Buick Sylark. Johnson purchased the car in 2000 in its original form, with no restoration whatsoever.

"Everybody's pride and joy is here," Johnson said. "It doesn't have to be a brand new, restored car. The key is that it runs and you can drive it through here."

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