Arts, Antiques & Autos Extravaganza offers perfect chance to explore Denton with day of nostalgic activities.

By Katherine Coleman Denton Live: July-Dec 2014

All roads lead to Denton each September—at least when you’re behind the wheel of a ’69 Chevy ragtop. This year, at the Sept. 13 event, you’ll see vintage autos, muscle cars and unique customs at the Arts, Antiques & Autos Extravaganza.

Thousands come downtown each year to check out the cars, listen to live music, shop for antiques and eat good food. From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. the car show showcases up to 200 paricipants who compete for numerous awards including Best of Show, specialty awards and peoples’ choice. The people of Denton love to celebrate the city’s history, unique local businesses and show off their creativity. Spend the day in town for an experience special to Denton.

This year six new themed awards will be available for the public to vote on, including Best “Family Truckster,” Best “Mid-Life Crisis Car,” “Diamond in the Rough” and more. Local artists will contribute by creating the custom-made unique awards.

10:00 a.m. Drive Downtown Before you land on the square, make a quick stop at the Denton Community Market, located an easy walk from the day’s main attraction. Find your parking spot for the day and browse through the rows of booths of locally grown fruits and vegetables, handmade crafts and local products. The market is at the Historical Park of Denton County at the intersection of Carroll Boulevard and Mulberry Street.

10:45 a.m. Put the pedal to the metal At the free car show on the courthouse square you can feast your eyes on the rows of glistening hot rods, classics, trucks, muscle cars, customs and motorcycles. Take your time strolling through the streets to look at each car, all to the soundtrack of live music played on the courthouse lawn. Gaze at four-wheeled works of art and admire their reflections in vibrant, candy-colored paint jobs. Each vehicle is competing to take home awards in its unique category including Custom and Street Rod, but ultimately hoping to take home the coveted “Best of Show” award.

11:30 a.m. Cash In Are you sitting on a treasure collection in your home? Dust off those valuable items and heirlooms in your attic. For a $5 fee, antique appraisers will be available to give you information about your antiques at one of these downtown stores: County Seat Antiques (109 W. Hickory St.), W. Douglas Antiques (119 N. Elm St.) or Amyx Fine Jewelry (222 W. Hickory St.).

12:00 p.m. Time For Tea The eclectic dining space of The Chestnut Tree Teahouse and Bistro with local art hung on the walls is the perfect spot for lunch. Family-run and operating since 1994, it originally functioned as an antique store in the front and a tea room in the back. You might be surprised to see beer taps sharing the same space as shelves of tea kettles and cups. Try one of their Buffalo Burgers or any sandwich on their popular beer bread. They work with local farms to source organic produce whenever possible. 107 W. Hickory St. 940-591-9475.

1:45 p.m. From Trash to Treasures So you found out your “treasures” weren’t worth anything? Don’t worry, you might find some new treasures with a unique Denton personality when you shop the wares of local artists on the courthouse lawn. Browse their displays of paintings, crafts and other works of art. Or take in some temporary art by peering down at the sidewalk and admiring the results of the annual Chalk Fest.

3:15 p.m. A Walk Through History As you explore the history of downtown Denton, peek inside the present-day Thomas Ethan Allen furniture store, which once housed the original Texas Normal College (now known as UNT), then make your way through the square’s multiplicity of markers. A full list and guide to the city’s historic markers can be found online at

6 p.m. Old-Time Treats You’ve had a full day, but now you’re hungry and ready for dinner. Head on over to Beth Marie’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream Parlor for a hot bowl of chili and splurge on a delicious homemade ice cream sundae for dessert. 117 W. Hickory St. 940-384-1818.


For more information, check out Arts, Antiques & Autos Extravaganza on our event calendar! Interested in signing up for the car show, antique appraisals or Chalk Fest? Click here.