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Bob Widuch doesn't venture onto his porch much on Wednesday nights since the weekly car and motorcycle shows started at nearby Buck Hill in Burnsville.

Beginning at 4:30 p.m. and continuing for at least four hours, cars come and go to the Weekly Wheels Car and Bike Meet — screeching along Buck Hill Road at high speeds, revving their engines and generally making a lot of noise, he said.

"It's like a cockfight. They want to come out and show their feathers," Widuch said. "The truth is in the tape. There's rubber everywhere."

Widuch, who has a townhouse northwest of Buck Hill, a popular ski resort that holds events in the off-season, is one of several residents who say the noise is unbearable and worry the speeding could cause an accident. Widuch said he thinks the event has gotten out of hand.

"It's a damn nuisance," said James Berndtson, whose toddler sometimes lies awake on car show nights. "It's literally vibrations inside the house."

The show began in mid-May, said Nate Birr, Buck Hill's chief operations officer. It's a free event that draws families and features up to 400 cars and 200 motorcycles in the ski hill's parking lot. There's food, live music and a different local brewery selling beer each week through Sept. 13.

Hundreds of car and motorcycle owners mingle with spectators, marveling at the engine of a shiny 1968 Chevrolet Chevelle or a supercharged 2008 Honda Civic.

Birr said the event has grown tremendously since it began in 2021.

"We do get people from different ages, different backgrounds, all different walks of life," he said.

Though Buck Hill hires a two-person security team and posts "No burnout" signs, Birr said he understands how neighbors might find the meet too loud or accuse drivers of drag racing.

"But that's not our intention," Birr said. "Once they leave our lot, there's not much we can do."

Drivers sometimes rev their engines once they hit nearby Interstate 35, he said, and people blame Buck Hill for the noise.

Birr said organizers welcome Burnsville police officers, who sometimes stop by. He said he wishes they would come more often.

Police response

Burnsville Police Capt. Matt Smith said he hasn't been to the meet and didn't see any dispatched calls related to speeding or noise there or at the nearby Stonewood Terrace townhouse community.

But on May 24, the event's second week, three officers were doing extra patrols in the area, and one parked there after hearing about cars speeding. Smith said it wasn't clear where that complaint originated.

"We can totally understand concerns about noise and speed," he said. "We are out there proactively patrolling, and I would encourage anyone to call 911 if they're seeing anything illegal."

Whether anyone is violating the law can be hard to determine, Smith said. Sometimes cars may appear to be speeding but aren't, he said, while at other times screeching tires or revving engines create the impression that a car is moving faster than it is.

Smith said Minnesota law on vehicle noise is "very vague." It requires only that cars have mufflers and can't emit "a sharp popping or crackling sound," he said.

Smith said police will continue to do extra patrols on Wednesdays. He wrote a briefing note in the department's online system so other officers will also patrol.

David Peterson of Lakeville, who brought his 1967 maroon Chevrolet Camaro to the meet, said Buck Hill has done a lot to improve the atmosphere and discourages speeding.

"We see a lot of familiar faces every week," he said. "It's fun to see the next generation show an interest in car collecting."

Craig Banham, the security guard at the meet entrance Wednesday, held a paddle that told drivers whether they could enter their prized wheels in the show or leave them in the regular parking lot.

"Everyone follows the rules, and I make sure of it," he said. "Once in a while, someone might trip their tires, rev their engine, but there's no drag racing."

Banham drove a golf cart on the sidewalk along Buck Hill Road, breaking up spectators who had gathered there to watch cars leave. Their presence, he said, only encouraged reckless driving. The crowd dispersed.

But moments later, two black cars revved their engines and zoomed by. And by 8:25 p.m., with the event officially over, people once again had lined up to watch the cars leave.

Justine Politz, who has lived nearby for nine years, said the cars whip up and down Buck Hill Road. It's dangerous, she said, and you have to be careful when walking nearby.

Jesus Lopez, who lives in Sunny Acres mobile home park just south of Buck Hill, said his car was T-boned by a car leaving the event last year. The other driver didn't stop, he said. Luckily, Lopez wasn't hurt.

"There's people's lives at risk," he said.

Bill Schorn, another nearby resident, said he "absolutely would like it to be quieter."

"When the business moves out too far in the community like this one has, it's just infringing too much," Schorn said. "There has to be a little bit more responsibility on the part of Buck Hill."