Car show season is in full swing, and one of the biggest Blue Oval shows around is the Carlisle Ford Nationals, which is held annually on the sprawling Carlisle Fairgrounds in early June. This event draws Ford fans from around the nation to soak up everything from the car show and swap meet to the burnout and bikini contest, and this year’s event is set for June 1-3, 2018, so it’s time to start making your plans.

The 2018 show offers some amazingly fresh displays, with three 50-year anniversaries plus Ford is giving guests a look into the future… — Michael Garland, Carlisle Events

“It’s the biggest and best event of its type so that in and of itself makes it a must-attend. With over 50,000 guests and 3,000 cars, the weekend has it all. From the special guests to the cars (modern and classic) to Ford itself being at the show, it really does everything a Blue Oval fan could want,” Michael Garland, Public Relations Manager at Carlisle Events, told us. “You’ll see rare one-off cars and trucks (and tractors); unique and rare rides; classic collections; and we’ll even look forward with some of Ford’s hot, new products that are coming to your local dealership. Bring your walking shoes because you’ll be immersed in a Ford lover’s utopia.”

From classics and tractors to current performers and brand-new Fords, you will see the full range of Blue Oval rides at this year’s Carlisle Ford Nationals held from June 1-3, 2018. (Photo Credit: Carlisle Events)

In addition to all the events, the Ford Nationals will host a number of specialty displays this year. Three displays will celebrate the respective 50th anniversaries of the Cobra Jet, GT500KR, and the Torino. The CJ will get indoor and outdoor displays, while other indoor specialty displays are dedicated to the Mustang Bullitt and the 20th anniversary of the Focus.


“The 2018 show offers some amazingly fresh displays, with three 50-year anniversaries plus Ford is giving guests a look into the future with its new products on display. Not only does Ford offer the new Ranger, Edge ST, Bullitt Mustang and Ford GT, but its experts will offer product walk-arounds too,” Michael added. “Special guest Dave Kindig is coming to Carlisle for the first time ever and this year’s Ford Nationals Select showcase within Building Y, which provides a fresh batch of top-of-the-line classics. There will be more chances to test-drive cars via the Ford Go Further Ride and Drive experience, plus on-site activities like the autocross continue to grow too.”

So, the event doesn’t just offer a huge car show and swap meet, there are plenty of activities and displays to keep you busy for a full three days of the show.

Besides the static displays and swap meet sales, there will be plenty of action inside the Carlisle Fairgrounds. The Ford Nationals includes burnout and bikini contests, dyno pulls, and even ride and drives in brand-new Fords.

“It’s grown at a break-neck pace. As recently as 2001, this event didn’t even draw 1,800 cars, now the National Parts Depot show field annually boasts over 3,000 vehicles. The cars and the people come from around the world to experience the show too,” Michael said of how the show will grow this year. “Changes not only include the show-field growth, but the always expanding manufacturers midway, enhanced involvement from Ford including free on-site test drives, as well as the activities and displays that people can experience first-hand. The demand and response for this event is something unmatched within the hobby.”

If the show sounds like a good time, you can find all the details for this year’s event here.