Car enthusiasts and Virginia City Merchants received some good news in January. The 49th Annual Virginia City Hill Climb will return to the Comstock. This year’s event will feature both exotic racers and vintage muscle cars zipping up the Truck Route on September 21-22. And it will add new events to help bring bigger crowds to C Street merchants.
Readers may remember the event was canceled in 2018 because of a number of issues. The Teller reported on the differences between the Virginia City Tourism Commission (VCTC), the Storey County Fire Department and the County Manager. The Teller’s own Sam Toll lead an effort to reinstate the Hill Climb last year but was unable to reach an agreement with the County in time. The event was canceled for the first time in 48 years in 2018.
VCTC Director Deny Dotson agreed to let the event return this year with the condition that a local promoter take charge of the event. Gold Hill’s Battle Born Digital Media and Marketing will promote the event this year.
More Feet on C Street
A key focus of the event this year is to bring more people to town. The main complaint of the event in years past was that the event’s organizers were too “low key”. Because they didn’t widely promote the event, they didn’t maximize the financial impact on the town. While they did some great things for the High School Seniors and specific folks, they focused on racing up the hill and not making the event something that will benefit the entire community.
“We are looking for ways to maximize the financial impact on C Street this year. As we plan for the event, we hope to partner with the Delta Saloon to hold a car show and vendor booths for folks to come to visit. As in years past, we will work with the High School Senior Class to raise money for their annual trip,” explained Sam Toll of Battle Born Digital Media and Marketing.
“Deny Dotson wanted a local promoter to handle the event to focus on reducing problems and getting more people in town. We will work with local and regional car clubs to do just that. Our goal is to get more people in town as well as get the cash registers of merchants singing. We think we can do that by adding attractions on C Street,” Toll said.
Canceling the event last year was not all bad. It prompted the formation of the Virginia City Merchants Coalition which has done a great job of bringing C Street Merchants and the VCTC closer together.