CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Get ready to put the pedal to the metal. The 2014 West Virginia International Auto Show cruises into Kanawha County this weekend, and on Wednesday the transformation began at the Charleston Civic Center.

“First thing they have to do is get all the backdrops and displays up before we can even move cars in,” said Ruth Lemmon the president of the West Virginia Auto & Truck Dealers Association.

Jennifer Smith/MetroNews

A Toyota sign was being lowered at the Charleston Civic Center on Wednesday.

From Honda to Hyundai, Toyota to Ford, all the major carmakers will have exhibits at the event which opens to the public on Friday morning.

Lemmon said thousands of auto lovers are expected to stroll through the three-day show that opens Friday.

“As an economic factor, we bring a lot of people from as far away as Columbus and Pittsburgh,” she said.

Some come just to browse, others will be on the look out for their next vehicle whether it’s an SUV, truck, car or van. The auto companies have their newest and best on the floor to show off.

New technology will be a big draw for many. They’ll get to see vehicles with inflatable rear seat belts, accident avoidance sensors, push-button gear selectors and surround-view rear-vision cameras with collision prevention. If it’s on the market or soon to be, the show figures to showcase it.

Lemmon said one of the great things about the event is that it’s family-friendly and appeals to all ages and economic groups.

“The cars are the stars, let there be no mistake,” said Lemmon. “But the big thing is to make it a real well-rounded program for the whole family.”

A crane hoisted luxury cars onto the mezzanine of the Civic Center Wednesday morning. Inside the Great Hall, the Toyota crew was setting up its stage and organizers of the event were studying their layout maps to make sure everyone was in the right spot.

The show runs Friday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information about the event, visit

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  • cutty77

    The Show is over with,and has been for about 2 years. Staying open to 10 at night is Assaine to. But Ruth and The Dealers care nothing about the people that have to work it. They all get Drunk on Thur. night for The VIP show,then sleep it off the next 2 days. Its amazing what free Booze will do to people. Brilliant

  • Hillbilly

    You want attendance , put classic and street machines on the floor . Who wants to see new cars .

  • BAC

    Find it hard to believe that people come from Columbus or Pittsburgh to Charleston's auto show, as poor as it's been in recent years. Raising the price of admission from $6 to $10 this year will further reduce the attendance, I predict.