Since 1974, Carlisle Events has been a staple in the automotive community. Our passion is legendary to those who have made Carlisle, PA their "Automotive Hometown" and our commitment to the hobby continues with our expansion and continued growth in markets outside of central Pennsylvania.
To continue our tradition as a respected leader in the automotive hobby; to be a responsible member of the communities in which we operate; and to pursue new business opportunities, ensuring the growth of the company.
Bill and Chip Miller (no relation), founded Carlisle Events in 1974 for "car guys and girls just like them." But..what makes Carlisle, Pennsylvania so unique? It is the home of Carlisle Events and the Carlisle Fairgrounds, the location for the largest car and truck collector events in the country. Prior to Carlisle Events' emergence, anyone interested in restoring or showing 1950s‐ or 1960s‐era cars had few options. That all changed when Chip Miller and Bill Miller Jr., became friends through a mutual interest in cars of the 1950s. Together they began going to car shows and automotive flea markets, where like‐minded individuals would hunt for parts and accessories to restore their vehicles. A need for these events became obvious to these two men in 1973. Until that time, the only cars deemed worthy to collect were pre‐WWII automobiles. Carlisle Events was one of the first companies in the United States organized specifically to conduct and promote events for the collector car and truck hobby. On September 26, 1974, on the rented Carlisle Fairgrounds, "Post War '74" took place. It was the very first car event promoted by the company. In a year still remembered for gas lines and inflation, nearly 600 vendors set up in more than 800 spaces, and 13,000 spectators paid the $1 admission to sample their wares.
Within a few years, the Carlisle Fairgrounds had become a mecca for collector car enthusiasts all over the world. The runaway success of what became known as Fall Carlisle led to a similar spring event in 1977. In short order, they became complete sellouts for vendor and car corral spaces. In 1981, after renting the fairgrounds for each event, the Millers purchased the 82‐acre property. Over the years, Carlisle Events has transformed the fairgrounds to suit the needs of car show participants and visitors. Continuous improvements include paved roads, a manicured landscape and more than 10 permanent buildings. At the same time, Carlisle Events has established consumer‐friendly services such as onsite bank financing, notary and title service and a wide variety of dining choices.
When Chip and Bill Miller held their first car show at the Carlisle Fairgrounds in 1974, they never could have envisioned the growth and legacy of Carlisle Events.
Chip Miller passed away in 2004 and his son Lance took over not long after. It’s been a family affair ever since as Lance has carried on his dad’s “Life is Good” mentality. As the 21st century rolls forward, Bill Miller Jr., continues to be with the company, as does his son and Lance’s long-time friend, Bill Miller, III. What started as a pair of automotive flea markets in the mid to late ‘70s has spawned specialty show after specialty show. Events now include Carlisle Import & Performance, Carlisle Ford Nationals, Carlisle Chevrolet Nationals, Carlisle Chrysler Nationals, Carlisle Truck Nationals and Corvettes at Carlisle.
To date, Carlisle Events hosts or is part of 11 events and five collector car auctions. By popular demand, the auction portion of Carlisle Events (Carlisle Auctions) was re‐established in 2013 and prior to that, events in Allentown Pennsylvania were added. Further, Carlisle Events introduced itself to the Florida market in 2013, initially hosting events in Zephyrhills. Now, with rapid growth in Florida comes a move to Lakeland and a larger facility in the Sun ‘n Fun complex. Success in Florida has yielded yet another auction event, the Sunset - Carlisle Collector Car Auction in Sarasota. Carlisle Events’ schedule is what it is today due to the demand for all things collector car and family fun. Events have evolved from “cars in a field” to destination activities for individuals and families from around the world. In all, more than a half a million guests visit shows promoted by Carlisle Events annually. Collector car auction locations include Sarasota and Lakeland, Florida as well as Carlisle, Pennsylvania. The Carlisle‐based events bring in $98 million annually to the local economy in Central Pennsylvania and the spring show is the organization’s biggest draw of the year with nearly 100,000 enthusiasts converging on the region.
Book online or call (800) 216-1876