1996 - The first Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance is organized by Bill Warner and held on The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island property. - Honorary Chairman is Sir Stirling Moss, world-famous Grand Prix driver. - Inaugural sponsors are Mercedes-Benz and The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. - Crowd estimated at 2,000. - Show donates $35,000 to Community Hospice Northeast Florida.
- America's First Formula One Champion, Phil Hill, is selected as the Honorary Chairman. - Show format expands to spotlight a particular marque – Ferrari becomes the first. - Show celebrates the Italian car manufacturer's 50th anniversary with numerous Ferraris on display.
- Endurance ace and three-time LeMans overall winner Hurley Haywood selected as the Honorary Chairman. - Porsche is the featured marque in honor of the German manufacturer's 50th anniversary. - Show features one of the most extensive displays of racing Porsches ever seen outside of the factory museum in Stuttgart, Germany.
- Carroll Shelby, creator of the famed Cobra series, selected as the show's Honorary Chairman. - The featured marque is Packard in honor of the car's 100th anniversary. - Show receives national accolades in a full-page feature article in The New York Times.
- Brian Redman, recognized as the most successful sports car racer ever, selected as the Honorary Chairman. - The Mercer automobile is the featured marque. - Amelia Island Concours founder Bill Warner follows the lead of Pebble Beach, the nation's oldest and largest concours, and establishes the non-profit 'Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance Foundation.' The show's tremendous growth necessitates the move. - Warner publicly announces that summer that proceeds for Community Hospice Northeast Florida from all previous concours near $1 million. He adds that all future proceeds will continue to go to benefit this charitable organization. - Mercedes-Benz's Regional Manager, Robert Crolic, graciously agrees to relinquish the title of Presenting Sponsor which allows other auto manufacturers to take part in the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance. Founder and - Chairman Bill Warner applauds the move and says that it will allow for more sponsor participation, a broader show and, ultimately, more funds for charity. - Show founder and chairman Bill Warner is nominated to the Road Racing Drivers Club. - Two full-time staffers – a director and an assistant – are hired to manage the show's growth.
- John Surtees, the only individual in history to win a World Championship on a motorcycle and in a race car, makes a rare U.S. appearance to serve as Honorary Chairman. - Pierce-Arrow, the car of choice for such personalities as Babe Ruth, Ginger Rogers and Charlie Chaplin, celebrates its 100th anniversary as the featured marque. - Emmy Award-winning actor Edward Herrmann, known for his convincing portrayal of FDR and his recurring role in the hit series, 'The Gilmore Girls,' agrees to serve as the master of ceremonies for the 2001 show. - The show's innovative style and unique themes attract star car collector Ele Chesney and a feature in Fortune magazine. - Retail inventory is expanded to include a variety of items; the sale of these items begins several days earlier than usual at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, to accommodate demand. - Foundation Chairman Bill Warner is honored with the 2001 Frank W. Sherman Award presented by the Rotary Club of South Jacksonville for exemplary community service.
- Racing legend Dan Gurney, one of only two people in history to win in all four categories of auto racing – NASCAR, Indy, F1 and Sports Cars – is the Honorary Chairman. - Cadillac is the featured marque and over 50 rare models are on the show field to celebrate the manufacturer's 100th anniversary. - The show field features over 250 cars and motorcycles. - 2001 Honorary Chairman John Surtees offers for the silent auction one of his racing suits. The first to ever leave his possession, it raises an unprecedented $10,000 by auction's end. - Auction records continue as a ride in the Goodyear blimp sells for $7,500 during the live auction at the Mercedes-Benz Gala Dinner. According to Goodyear, it's the most ever offered for a blimp ride prompting the tire maker to add a second ride for auction. It, too, goes for $7,500. The two auctions take a total of five minutes. - Attendance for the show skyrockets to an estimated 14,000 spectators, up significantly from the previous year. - Foundation Chairman Bill Warner is chosen the '2002 Meguiar's Car Collector Hobby Person of the Year' at a black tie affair at the world-famous Beverly Hills Hotel. The honor is considered the 'Oscar' for car collecting. - The foundation donates $100,000 to Community Hospice Northeast Florida, increasing the total raised to nearly $1.2 million since 1996.
- Jim Hall, engineer, race car driver, team owner/manager, and creator of the famous Chaparral race cars, serves as the Honorary Chairman. - 50 Years of Corvette and 100 Years of Buick share honors for the show's theme. - For the first time in history, all of the ultra-rare Corvette Grand Sports appear together. - An unprecedented six-author signing takes place; this includes Dennis Adler, Jerry Burton, Tom Cotter, David E. Davis, Jr., Dave McLellan and Brock Yates. - Record rainfall forces the show inside the halls of The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island and the adjoining tents of RM Auctions. Due to the efforts of volunteers and The Ritz-Carlton staff, nearly 160 of the 250-plus entrants are displayed. - Despite the inclement weather, the Foundation is still able to make a donation to Community Hospice Northeast Florida.
- Three-time Indy 500 winner Bobby Unser becomes The Amelia's 9th Honorary Chairman. - The most diverse selection ever of Indy 500 winners, including the race's very first winner and Unser's three Indy-winning rides, is displayed on the field of dreams. - 'Legends of Indy' seminar proves to be very popular and sets the tone for future ones. - RM Auctions hammers nearly $12 million in cars in a single day; it's the second highest total for the auction house in the ‘04 season. - Show adds a Director of Operations and promotes staff member to Director of Sponsorships and Media Relations. - The Foundation donates $100,000 to Community Hospice Northeast Florida.
- The Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance celebrates its 10th anniversary. - NASCAR legend and three-time Daytona 500 winner Bobby Allison selected Chairman. - The cars of Alfa Romeo are the featured marque along with a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the innovative Chevrolet small block V-8 engine. - The Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance is one of only a few shows chosen by GM for its year-long celebration of the small block V-8. - The Amelia is the first show of the season to feature Alfa Romeo. - Record crowd of nearly 18,000 attends. - Auto Aficionado magazine debuts at the show. - George Barris, 'King of the Customizers,' unveils his 'treatment' of the Pontiac GTO. - A second Best In Show Award is announced - Concours de Sport - and the award becomes a permanent part of the event. - RM Auctions hammers nearly $14 million in sales - the highest Amelia total yet - several cars surpass the $1 million mark. - Louis Vuitton selects the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance as one of only a handful of Concours in the world to participate in the Louis Vuitton Classic award. Amelia's Best In Show winners join those of the Pebble Beach - Concours d'Elegance and The Quail - both of California, and the Concorso d'Eleganza Villa d'Este in Italy to compete for an overall winner. - The Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance Foundation, Inc. donates $100,000 to Community Hospice of Northeast Florida sending the overall total to $1.4 million since the show's start.
What began as a unique Florida way to celebrate the legacy of the automobile and its tremendous impact on our lives has now become one of the premier automotive events in the United States. Every one of us in the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance organization has felt the lure of the automobile in some special way. Our organization benefits from a very diverse and capable team of professionals who sit on our Foundation's Board of Directors. The Board's guidance is a particularly vital element in the event's success and longevity. The Concours' day-to-day operations and marketing are also in the hands of an equally capable team of professionals. Additionally, we are very fortunate to have assembled a judging team like no other; we're proud to say that these individuals know cars. We've found the formula for success and we are continually striving to improve it with every show.
Whether it was the all conquering Porsche 917 that rewrote endurance racing history or the ultra elegant Voisin C15 that makes a statement wherever it goes, each and every one of us at the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance has a burning passion for the automobile. And, you see it in our event. As our friend and supporter, Barry Meguiar, President & CEO of Meguiar's, Inc., loves to say, 'We're car crazy!'