SARASOTA, Fla.—Attention car enthusiasts: a collection of vintage vehicles is just a short drive away. Sarasota Classic Car Museum is America’s 2nd oldest continually operating classic car museum.
Located across the street from The Ringling Museum, this car exhibit features 90 automobiles and is constantly rotating to showcase a variety of modern, vintage and one-of-a-kind vehicles.
“The way it’s designed, you kind of walk through history in a beginning to current era, if you will,” said Nathan Clary, sales manager of Vintage Motors of Sarasota, which is a partner of the museum. “Starting with horseless carriages, Brass Era cars...to early American cars, starting with the 20s, 30s, progressing through history. So you can kind of see the evolution of the automobile.”
Tours are self-guided and available seven days per week. Visitors can learn details about each automobile, such as its manufacturer, date created, weight and its cost if it was bought new.
And no museum would be complete without some celebrity memorabilia!
“My favorite car in the museum...would probably have to be the John Ringling's Silver Ghost. I like Rolls-Royces, and I like history and that car has got it both,” said Clary. “It was John Ringling’s personal Silver Ghost. It was known as the circus car that would go on the circus train and follow the Ringling Brother Circus where ever it went across the country, so he would have something to be driven in while he was in each town.”
Sarasota Classic Car Museum is also home to a recreation of Abraham Lincoln’s funeral hearse. “We were actually approached by the history channel and were asked if we would like to receive that piece if they built it. It was built in Clearwater so it was an easy delivery for them,” said Clary.
Admission to the museum is $14.85 for adults and $9.25 for children 12 and under. Kids five and under get in free. You can find military, senior and group discounts here.
If you like what you see, you can check out the classic cars for sale next door at Vintage Motors of Sarasota.
To learn more about the museum, check out their website.