Avanti owners returning to South Bend to mark 60th anniversary of Studebaker sports car

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Drivers are coming from at least ten states to mark the 60th anniversary of the famous Avanti sports car.

The festivities start on Thursday with a Polish buffet dinner at the Studebaker National Museum, followed by presentations, Avanti history sessions, and a photoshoot on Friday.

Friday’s events will conclude with a reunion for former Studebaker and Avanti Motors employees at the Gillespie Center.

On Saturday, the Studebaker National Museum’s 2022 Concours d’Elegance at Copshaholm will feature the first 1963 and last 1964 Studebaker Avanti cars.

The weekend wraps up with an Avanti 60th Anniversary Celebration dinner.

“I grew up in South Bend and Mishawaka, and many of our neighbors worked at Studebaker,” said Elkhart resident Joe Swift, who bought his 1963 Avanti 13 years ago.  “The Avanti design has never been improved upon, and Avanti owners remind me of Marines, such is their camaraderie.”

Event coordinators are still looking for more local Avanti owners to join the festivities.

“We are hoping to add fifteen more Avanti cars to the weekend celebration,” said Mike Baker, organizer of the Avanti Owners Association Indiana Chapter event.  “We’re also hoping to involve as many South Bend people as possible who had a hand in building this classic American design, whether working for Studebaker or successor companies.”

To sign up, email Mike Baker at mikebaker@aoai.org

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