While Corvette enthusiasts each have their favorite model and year, what if you could go to one event and see them all in one spot? Not only that, but a place to hang out and bench-race with all your Vette buddies? It’d have to be an occasion that shows off everything that makes us crave Corvettes: power, performance, panache, and passion. Did we leave something out? Well, if we did, you’d likely find it a Funfest, and annual three-day event held at Mid America Motorworks’s sprawling campus in Effingham, Illinois, just a short drive east of St. Louis, Missouri.
Hosted by Mike Yager, Mid America’s founder and self-proclaimed “chief cheerleader”, this event draws some 15,000 Corvettes from all over the country, with more than 45,000 spectators, making it one of the largest such gatherings in the country. What’s the attraction? Well, for one thing, it’s free. So there’s no pressure to buy anything—just kick back and enjoy.
“What is truly exciting is we have seen increased attendance at Funfest each of the past 14 years,” Yager notes. “ Funfest is a great way to celebrate our customers and the camaraderie shared by Corvette enthusiasts.”
One way Yager celebrated was with a free concert, put on by Three Dog Night on the evening of Sept. 22. Other highlights of the weekend included technical seminars hosted by industry experts and the debut of, Mike Yager's Corvette Bible.
In honor of the weekend’s special guest, renowned George Barris, the King of Kustoms, the car from Corvette Summer was the featured Corvette of the event. Additionally, it was featured on commemorative event posters and T-shirts given free to each registrant who brought a Corvette to the show.
Throughout the weekend, Corvettes from every model year could be seen. In “Club Field,” more than 74 Corvette clubs from around the country attended Funfest. Special display parking featured custom Corvettes as well.
In addition, enthusiasts were able to buy, sell, and modify Corvettes at Funfest. Dozens of companies displayed and demonstrated Corvette-related aftermarket products. At the “Install Alley,” more than 200 customers had new exhaust systems bolted on by Corsa, B&B, and Mid America Motorworks. Many other Corvette owners added high-performance brake systems from Baer Brakes, SLP air intakes, and American Car Craft dress-up items to their vehicles.
Callaway Corvette, Bloomington Gold, Bondurant Racing, and Goodyear also set up special displays for Corvette fans. General Motors impressed enthusiasts with an extensive display of 2008 Corvettes. GM Engineers were also available to give escorted rides to both kids and those young-at-heart attending Funfest.
Like everybody else in attendance, we can hardly wait until next year. So don’t miss Corvette Funfest 2008 on September 19-21. It will be Mid America’s 15th Corvette Funfest and the special theme is the 20th Anniversary of the Corvette Challenge Series.
Mid America Motorworks
17082 N Us Highway 45
Effingham, IL 62401