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Posted on Thu. Aug. 21, 2014 - 12:01 am EDT

Top 5 things to do at the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Festival

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ACD Festival

WHAT: This year's event celebrates Auburn cars and includes a new artisan marketplace, Fort Wayne food trucks, Downtown Cruise-In, and antique and art shows.

WHEN: Most events are Aug. 28-31; the Garage Cruise start things noon-4 p.m. Sunday. For more information, visit

WHERE: Most events take place on and near the DeKalb County Courthouse square in downtown Auburn.

COST: Admission to most events is free, but some have an admission or participation fee.


AUCTION INFORMATION: Auctions America,; Worldwide Auctioneers,


People from around the world travel to the quaint and charming town of Auburn to take a step back in history. From auctions to flea markets and even a “Great Gatsby”-themed gala, the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Festival is more than just a car show. It's a celebration of America's past and present.

Sarah Payne, executive director of the ACD Festival, said the event Aug. 24-31 is so steeped in tradition that many people just visualize a festival all about cars. While cars are a big part of it, there's also plenty to do if someone is not coming to buy, sell or show a car.

With a slew of events to choose from, and only so much time, The News-Sentinel put together a top-five list of things to do at the ACD Festival this year:

Moonlight at the Mausoleum

Moonlight at the Mausoleum may sound like the title of a horror movie, but don't be nervous. The guided trolley tour of three local cemeteries hopes to illuminate some interesting Auburn history. The tour guide will share the stories of local history-makers and influential people.

The tour lasts an hour and departs from downtown Auburn, at the corner of 9th and Cedar streets, at 9 p.m. Aug. 29. The cost is $5 per adult.

Food Truck Cook-Off, Craft Beer Tasting

As summer starts to wind down, we're in the final weeks of food truck feasting before winter returns. Festival organizers invite people to get a taste of local food truck fare at the Food Truck Cook-Off.

Playing off popular chef-challenge shows, each participating vendor will be given a few ingredients to use in creating a new dish, but the vendors won't know what those ingredients are until they receive them.

Featuring many of the food trucks from the Fort Wayne Food Truck Association, the evening also will have more than 20 regionally produced beers, thanks to Five Star Distributing. There are two ticket options: $10 for food or beer, and $20 for both food and beer. Local musicians also will perform during the event.

“The food trucks will be providing some great and nontraditional festival food,” Payne said. “It's going to be great having the streets full of people with live music, and all of that is free.

“We've added a huge amount of live music this year,” Payne added. “We are having three bands play both Friday and Saturday nights.”

The cook-off and beer tasting start at 5 p.m. on 9th Street between Main and Cedar streets.

Arts and Craft Show

The Downtown Auburn Business Association is celebrating local artists and craftspeople at the Arts and Craft Show. The show has been an ACD Festival favorite for 33 years.

Featuring nearly 100 vendors, artists' creations will be for sale 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. Aug. 31 in downtown Auburn. Woodworking, pottery, ceramics, stained glass and other decor will be featured at the event. Admission is free.

Historic Home Tour

What's a better way to learn about a community than to visit the homes of residents? At the Historic Home Tour, people will be able to do just that 10 a.m.-4p.m. Aug. 31. People can visit any of the four historic homes on the tour.

While each home is beautiful in its own way, the homes were chosen for the tour because of their historical significance, not just looks. The homes were once occupied by automotive company executives and Auburn community leaders. Docents will provide information about the houses and their inhabitants.

Admission is $5 per person, but children under 5 years old get in free.

The Auction

It's impossible to make a list like this and not include the glamorous, exciting and high-dollar classic-car auction. Fun for moms and motorheads alike, the auction is one of the focal points of the festival.

Last year, the most notable car sold was a Duesenberg Model J Convertible Coupe that attracted a winning bid of just more than $1.5 million.

The auctions, held by Auctions America and Worldwide Auctioneers, draw thousands.

This year, a little bit of Hollywood will grace the auction stage. The 1921 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost Saloon used in the acclaimed HBO series “Boardwalk Empire” will be available to the highest bidder.

Visitors also will have the chance to meet Frank Fritz, star of the History Channel's “American Pickers,” and Rick and Kelly Dale, stars of the History Channel's hit series “American Restoration.” They will be available for meet-and-greet and autograph sessions throughout the weekend.

In addition, the Auburn Auction Park will host interactive and high-flying freestyle ATV and dirt bike shows, monster truck shows and rides, and provide sky-high views of all the Auburn excitement via helicopter rides.

For those unable to be part of the fun, the NBC Sports Network will once again put the Labor Day tradition on a national stage, bringing four days of select highlights to more than 80 million homes across the U.S., including over six hours of live, gavel-to-gavel action.

For more about auction times and schedules, go to www.auctionsamerica​.com ​​or​;

If all of that sounds a little exhausting, don't worry; festival organizers have introduced something to help people along — a vintage cab ride.

“They can get around easily and enjoy the ride in the cool cab,” Payne said. “It's a stretch Checker cab that can fit 12 people. Talk about getting a ride in ​history.”

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