Expect to SWOON

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CONCOURS D’ELEGANCE FLIGHTS & FANCY GALA OFFERS AN EVENING OF EXTRAVAGANT ENTERTAINMENT

Each year the Flights & Fancy Aeroport Gala places event goers in the driver’s seat to the Hilton Head Island Concours d’Elegance & Motoring Festival by previewing some of the most alluring automobiles and aircraft to date.

In conjunction with the Grand Motoring Film Festival (Nov. 4 at the Arts Center of Coastal Carolina) and Michael Anthony’s Tableside Wine Dinner (Nov. 4 at Michael Anthony’s Cucina Italiana), it kick starts the weekend-long car show.

Even though this Nov. 5 “not-to-miss VIP event” gets vroom-ier each year — more to come on this — a few integral components remain the same.

The juxtaposition between hardware and evening wear, avant-garde and classical, and the darkness of the evening sky and the beautiful uplighting by Sha Sha Harnik of Loluma drive many to attend year after year. The event gives off a Great Gatsby-James Bond vibe that is equal parts seductive and entertaining.

“Guests can expect to be swooned with an atmosphere of vintage aircrafts and automobiles, new model displays, a showing of local cuisine, full bar and the ever-talented Synergy Twins, the electric violinist duo,” said Sawyer Strelcheck, Director of Operations for the Hilton Head Island Concours d’Elegance & Motoring Festival.

The main reason for the event, Strelcheck said, is to contribute to the Concours’ charitable fund, Driving Young America, by way of Silent Auction.

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Items includes a one-day Driving School from BMW Performance Driving School, a behind-the-scene tour of the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum, hotel accommodations, “amazing” porcelain sculptures, she said.

There are two surprises this year, too.

“This event keeps evolving,” said Strelcheck. “Each year our sponsors want to come back bigger and bigger and it keeps building momentum. This year we have added Porsche taxiway rides and a wine tasting with Scott Pruett.”

“It’s not just about seeing the cars and aircraft, it’s about getting in for a ride,” Strelcheck said. “The Porsche taxiway rides will be offered from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. with professional instructors from the Porsche track experience at racing speeds up to 150 mph on the taxiway at the Hilton Head Island Airport.”

This offering is open to all ticket holders but on a first-come, first-served basis and space is limited. The wine tasting, hosted by Lexus, will be at the Lexus display from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. and features champion race car driver and Lexus brand ambassador Scott Pruett and his wife, Judy.

The Pruetts founded their vineyard in 2006 and, from its debut release, this “premier family-owned and operated estate distinguished itself as the most highly acclaimed and celebrated producer of the region.”

“Scott and Judy shifted from velocity to viticulture with the same passion and determination to bring forward their very best in everything they produce,” a news release said.

Strelcheck said you don’t have to be a car enthusiast to really enjoy the Concours d’Elegance Flights & Fancy Gala.

“I don’t even know how to pronounce many of the cars’ names but you look at these huge, beautiful machines and you think, how did someone in the 30s build this?” she said. “You don’t have to be a car person to also get your mind blown and want to learn more about the stories of each car. That’s what really gets them accepted into the show.”

For more information, visit hhiconcours.com/aviation.html