Southeastern Classic XXXVI
September 21-24, 2023
The Event: The Southeastern Classic is the premier Austin-Healey regional event in the Southeast. It is now in its 36th year and still going strong. One of the fun things about the Southeastern Classic is the different locations that it is held in every year. Attendees get to experience different venues from the mountains to the coast from Florida to Virginia. While the event is always held somewhere in the Southeast, we regularly pull Healey enthusiasts from all parts of the US and Canada. This year’s event will be in the Biltmore Village area in Asheville, NC which will be a great central location for the entire Eastern half of the US.
Host Club: The Carolinas Austin-Healey Club will be the host club for the 2023 event. The Carolinas Austin-Healey Club members have been working for over a year planning what we think will be our best Southeastern yet. You can reach us at SEClassic2023@gmail.com.
Lodging: Our host hotel is the DoubleTree by Hilton located in Biltmore Village/Asheville NC. We are located only 3 miles away from the entrance to the Blue Ridge Parkway. We have negotiated what we think are excellent rates, especially for this time of year and for this highly sought after location. Once you have registered for SEC you will receive an email from us with a link to the DoubleTree where you will find our room rate of $149 per night , which includes a full hot breakfast for two each day. We have negotiated the same room rate for 3 days before and 3 days after our September 21-24 event dates. With all to see and do in the area we hope you will consider extending your stay to take advantage of these great room rates.
The Biltmore Estate: We are proud to be hosting the 36th Annual Southeastern Classic in the shadow of the largest privately owned home in America – The Biltmore Estate, a 250 room chateau built by George Vanderbilt, was completed in 1895. It will be worth your trip to our Southeastern Classic if for no other reason than to tour the Biltmore Estate! We have negotiated a discount entry fee to the Estate for our Healey event that can be accessed via this Ticket Purchase Link : Biltmore Estate Tickets Use PROMO CODE : seahc23 at checkout. You will be able to select your preferred date and time of entry for your visit. We hope you can make time to visit the Biltmore House. Remember that our Hotel rates are good 3 days prior to and 3 days after our event, effectively from September 18-27, 2023. The House, Winery and grounds are all remarkable and well worth the price of admission – a place like none other.
Historic Asheville Trolley Tour: Starting at the front portico of the host hotel, our private, fully narrated Gray Line Trolleys will carry 34 participants each through Biltmore Village, into the famous River Arts District, past the historic Grove Park Inn, and through several distinct, historic neighborhoods with amazing architecture. You will learn more about this historic city and leave with an even greater appreciation for it after this 1.5 hour journey. Trolleys will depart daily on Sept 20-22 (Wed-Fri) at intervals between 1:00pm and 4:00pm and again on Sept 23 (Sat) between 9:00-12:15pm during our Southeastern, depending on signups. A sign up form for the afternoon you prefer will be available at the SEC registration table in the lobby when you arrive. We expect a huge response to this offering so don’t hesitate to reserve your seats during SEC check-in— it’s well worth the $28/person to be chauffeured and treated to all the stories. (NOTE: you can buy a second day HOP-ON HOP-OFF ticket for the next day for $7.00/person at the Trolley Headquarters Stop while on your initial tour)
Welcoming Party – Thursday, September 21st: After settling into the host hotel, just steps from the entry gate to the Biltmore Estate, we will all head to the shaded back lot with chairs and coolers in hand. Once there we will mingle with other Healey folks to renew friendships and begin new ones. Local Food Trucks, Live Music, and a “First Timers” car show will greet you, all geared toward the adventures everyone will experience on the world famous Blue Ridge Parkway in the coming days.
Blue Ridge Parkway Poker Rally – Friday, September 22nd: After indulging in our full hot freshly prepared complimentary breakfast provided by the hotel, we will pick up Rally directions and the first of 5 playing cards in sealed envelopes. We will leisurely depart out of the back entrance of the hotel with the first car starting at 9:30am. We will head up Vanderbilt Road just 3 miles through the beautiful Biltmore Forest neighborhood, past their Donald Ross designed golf course, to America’s most visited national park, the Blue Ridge Parkway. We will travel North for a little over an hour, taking in breathtaking vistas, hoping to see bears, deer and other wildlife. Possible playing card pickups will be at the Blue Ridge Parkway Visitors Center and the Folk Art Center before reaching the top of Mt. Mitchell, at 6,684 ft, the highest mountain peak east of the Rockies. Be sure to walk up to the observation tower from the parking area to get the full effect of this tremendous pinnacle. By the time we retrace our route back south on the Parkway to the Hotel, we will have received all 5 playing cards and will know just how lucky we are, in more ways than one.
Tech Sessions – Friday, September 22nd: Several technical sessions are scheduled for the afternoon covering topics like “How to Check Your Points Gap, Without Removing Your Distributor Cap” , and “Tips on How to Get All of Your Tech Questions Answered”. They will be held in the Vanderbilt Room just off the main lobby of the hotel. Check out the schedule in your Registration Packet for times, subjects and presenters.
Buffet Bingo Dinner- Friday, September 22nd: Join the Healey Bingo crowd as we enjoy a delicious DoubleTree by Hilton buffet dinner in the Burghley Room (now known as the Burghley Bingo Casino) featuring Herb Grilled Chicken with Port Wine Rosemary Jus, Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Crispy Brussels sprouts with Honey Balsamic Glaze, Field Greens Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette, Bread and Butter, Cheesecake with Seasonal Fruit, Regular or Decaf Coffee, Hot Herbal Tea, Iced Tea or Water.
Our after dinner recreation will feature our own “Professional” Bingo Caller Extraordinaire & “prizes like you’ve never seen before”!! Come join the fun & make memories you can tell your kids about one day!! (If you can remember them!!).
Car Show – Saturday, September 23rd: Enjoy another full breakfast compliments of the Hotel, clean up your Healey at our car wash station, and prepare for a CAR SHOW IN THE FOREST – Biltmore Forest that is. An idyllic park-like setting of a grass field full of beautiful Austin-Healeys brings tears to my eyes – how about yours? I can hardly wait until September. Since it’s less than 2 miles to the show field, we hope to have a hotel shuttle going back & forth to allow access & freedom to our group during the 9:30am until 1:00pm show.
Blue Ridge Parkway Drive to Mt. Pisgah & Pisgah Inn – Saturday, September 23rd : How about another beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway drive? Let’s go South this time! It’s a short 20 miles or so to Milepost 408.6 where the Pisgah Inn is located (only 45 minutes or so, with rest rooms right on the Parkway) BUT it’s a totally different drive than going North! First of all, there are numerous tunnels of all lengths and great vistas overlooking populated areas vs vast forests. You will love it!! You’ll be back with plenty of time to relax before dinner.
Hospitality – Thursday / Friday / Saturday, September 21st-22nd-23rd (times TBD):The focal point of every Austin Healey event is the Hospitality Room where attendees can relax with a cold drink and some fantastic & delicious snacks (or more likely, fabulous delicacies) while meeting with fellow enthusiasts to discuss the events of the day. That is our objective – to out-do ourselves & leave a BIG IMPRESSION.
Awards Banquet – Saturday, September 23rd : How else do you wrap up a Fantastic Event but with a GREAT AWARDS BANQUET? The DoubleTree by Hilton Chef will once again perform his magic with a choice of plated meals:
- Pan Seared Salmon w/ honey whole grain mustard glaze
- Grilled Sirloin w/ steak house demi
Each will be served with an organic mixed green salad w/candied walnuts, cherry tomatoes, goat cheese, w/creamy Carolina Apple Pie Dressing plus the Chef’s choice of seasonal vegetables and roasted garlic potato puree… includes coffee, tea, bread & butter, and Dutch Apple Pie for dessert.
A fast paced Awards Presentation will follow dinner, so make plans to be there to cheer your cohorts (& hopefully yourself) to victory. There may even be a few “surprise awards” that you will not want to miss!! Think positive & good things will happen!!!
If you have any questions about our SEC, please contact us at SEClassic2023@carolinasahc.com.