Antique autos still a draw in tech-obsessed Silicon Valley

Antique autos still a draw in tech-obsessed Silicon Valley

When it comes to cars, Silicon Valley is known for its penchant for the shiniest, newest techiest vehicles: hybrids, electric cars and self-driving EVs, all loaded with microchips, screens and satellite connections. But for Allan Greenberg and other members of the Santa Clara Valley Ford Model T Club, there’s something that’s still very alluring about an automobile made in the first part of the last century.

“There’s something about the old cars that is really attractive to people,” said Greenberg, who learned to drive on a 1936 Chevrolet and also owns a modern Chevy Bolt. “People are amazed at the technology from back then.”

Allen Greenberg’s 1923 Ford Model T Touring is parked in front of the gazebo at History Park in San Jose. The 23rd annual Antique Autos event will take place Sept. 9, 2023. (Photo courtesy of Allen Greenberg) 

Greenberg and his wife, Lucy, will be bringing their red 1923 Model T out to History Park in San Jose this Saturday where it’ll be among about 150 cars made before 1946 on display at the 23rd annual Antique Autos show. The oldest car expected to be out there is an 1899 Osen & Hunt vehicle that was made in San Jose by a bicycle manufacturer that started making cars.

There will be a lot going on besides just a car show, too, with a lot of family entertainment including the San Francisco Bay Area Vintage Dancers, the Fabulous JewelTones singers, the Rhythmaires Band, a barbershop quartet and a juggler. There’ll be craft demonstrations and antique collectibles on display, and several historic homes will be open for tours (including the blacksmith shop, which is rarely in operation).

And car fans will want to be there at 2 p.m. when Mike Hennessy of the “Car Guy Channel” leads a Model T “put together” behind the Electric Light Tower. Admission is $10, with discounts for seniors, youth and History San Jose members. Kids 5 and under get in for free. You can get more information at historysanjose.org/event/antique-autos-in-history-park.

OPENING VERSES: The ninth annual San Jose Poetry Festival starts Thursday night with an event that features four vibrant voices from San Jose and beyond: Lorna Dee Cervantes, Matt Sedillo, Elizabeth Jiménez Montelongo and Rachelle Escamilla. That 7 p.m. event at the First Unitarian Church on Third Street in downtown San Jose kicks off a four-day celebration of poetry with readings and workshops at several venues including Tabard Theatre, History Park, and the School of Arts and Culture at the Mexican Heritage Plaza and on Zoom.

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The big event Saturday night at the Mexican Heritage Plaza will introduce some of the region’s rising voices with Santa Clara County Youth Poet Laureate Thy Hope Luong and Co-Vice Youth Poets Laureate Emma Zhang and Matthew Kim. Festival passes and tickets are available at the door of any of the events — and admission is free for anyone 19 and under. You can get the full lineup of events at bit.ly/23sjpf.

ART AND ABOUT: Students at Lynhaven Elementary will get an artistic treat whenever they visit the school’s new multi-use center thanks to several pieces of art created by pop artist Sonya Paz. That includes two large 5-foot by 7-foot panels on either side of the stage — “Learning is Where Dreams Begin” and “Lynx to the Future.”  There is also 10 pop art icons that follow those themes around the room’s perimeter. Students and families got their first look at the new art at last week’s back-to-school night.

Paz moved out of the Bay Area in 2015 and had a fine art gallery for several years in Campbell. She’ll be back there with new paintings for a fall exhibit Sept. 14 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Tessora’s Barra Di Vino. You can RSVP at sonyapaz.com.