What took place Dec. 14 in North Charleston rarely happens in these parts: a yearly car show, with plaques and everything, in mid-December.
Save for periodic Saturday cruise-ins, the local car show season effectively shuts down around Thanksgiving and doesn't throttle up again until just before spring.
Sure, the all-Mustang and Ford show crept close to the traditional shopping season in past years, and the local Scion club sponsored a fest at Rick Hendrick Toyota of North Charleston the first week in December a couple of times.
But the Winter Show Off, held last Saturday at Texas Roadhouse off Rivers Avenue, fit in just 11 days before Christmas.
If organizers took a chance hosting a new car show so late in the year, it was for solid reasons - to raise funds for charity and due to popular demand.
That's why car enthusiasts such as Patrick Shockley rolled out his 2005 Ford SportTrak pickup with homegrown artwork on the covered bed.
"It's the only one with custom suspension," said Shockley, of Hanahan.
Despite wrapping up early when downpours hit the region, the show drew a sizable crowd in the morning and early afternoon. "We've had 54 wheels come out," said Ronnie Seprish, who with P.C. Garvin put on the show. Vehicles included "a lot of hot rods, low riders, 4 by 4s, classics," he said.
Organizers picked December for the show because "a lot of people wanted it," Seprish said, citing the long gap between the last big shows in early- to mid-November and the 2014 season's unofficial launch in March.
Show sponsors consisted of Texas Roadhouse restaurant and Courageous Kidz, a nonprofit organization that, according to its website, is "working to create a safe haven for kids with cancer and their families."
According to Seprish, "Texas Roadhouse backed us real good." The dining spot provided a portion of its parking lot for the scheduled seven-hour show, as did the Super Kmart next door.
In the Charleston area, yearly shows most often get up and running with the support of a local car club or so. The Winter Show Off took a different route, but Seprish said he and Garvin have put on events like this before.
"I think we are going to do it annually," he said.
For more information, contact Seprish at 843-568-1587 or Garvin at 843-906-9870.
Reach Jim Parker at 937-5542 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Patrick Shockley’s custom truck shows off exotic artwork on the bedcover. He displayed the truck at the first Winter Show Off car event Dec. 14 in North Charleston (Jim Parker/Staff 12-14-2013).×
One of the Winter Show Off’s best-maintained models was this 2000 era GMC truck belonging to organizer Ronnie Seprish. The first-time show took place Dec. 14 (Jim Parker/Staff 12-14-2013).×
This purple-hued low rider was one of the variety of cars and trucks on hand at the Winter Show Off at Texas Roadhouse in North Charleston (Jim Parker/Staff 12-14-2013).×
Souped up wheels show off Ronnie Seprish’s GMC truck (Jim Parker/Staff 12-14-2013).×