As I have said many times before, there is a lot going on in the trucking industry. Not only are the rules and regulations changing, everything else is too. The technologies, the trucks, the equipment, just name it…. everything in this industry is undergoing a big time changes.
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But, one of the great things about this industry is the camaraderie. This is an extended family, and just like the average family, it is always great to see old friends.
Being truck driver means that you choose the endless roads as your lifestyle. World is your living room now, so why not to try making the most out of it! What better way to do that then by combining work with a bit of fun?
The best way to do that is by attending one of the many trade and truck shows. There are literally hundreds of these being held constantly throughout the United States.
Some are huge events, while others are just local fairs. Many include other activities, such as live music, contest, and such. Others are more like expos with actual vendor booths set up, showing off the latest and greatest industry related toys.
Whether you are entering your own vehicle or just wanting to look around, they can be great fun.
Here is a short list of some of the more common ones. Some of these are large, while others are not. But one thing is guaranteed… they can be fun!
1. MID-AMERICA TRUCKING SHOW
When: March 31-April 2, 2016
Where: Kentucky Expo Center in Louisville, Kentucky.
The Mid-America Trucking Show (MATS) is one of the largest commercial trucking industry events in the world! It is held every year attracting as many as 70,000 attendees and more than 1,000 exhibitors from around the United States and from abroad.
If you register before February 29th, it’s free, after the 29th is $10.00 to attend. Onsite parking is limited but they do offer a free shuttle service.
For more information call (502) 899-3892 or visit www.truckingshow.com.
2. 75 CHROME SHOP TRUCK SHOW
When: April 22-24, 2016
Where: 75 Chrome Shop in Wildwood, Florida.
75 Chrome Shop Truck Show is coming up soon, so register now for their 18th annual show! The name should say it all. This is a beauty contest, the shinier the better. They pride themselves in having some of the best giveaways. Past prizes included grills, train horns, LED lights, steering wheels, chrome dash parts and much more.
Registration is quick and easy with online application, fees start at $75.00 and up. But if you just wish to be a spectator, then it’s free.
For more information call (866) 255-6206 or visit www.75chromeshop.com.
3. ATHS NATIONAL CONVENTION & SHOW
When: May 26-28, 2016
Where: Oregon State Fair & Exposition Center in Salem, Oregon.
The American Truck Historical Society (ATHS) was formed in 1971. They are dedicated to maintaining the history of the trucking industry. Check out their website to learn more about their various programs and activities.
Last year’s show over 1200 trucks and trailers were on display, with additional vendors on-site, and this year is expected to be even better. Registration is quick and easy with their online form.
For more information call (816) 891-9900 or visit www.aths.org.
4. WHEEL JAM TRUCK SHOW
When: June 3-5, 2016
Where: South Dakota State Fairgrounds in Huron, SD.
The Wheel Jam Truck Show is great fun with live music, classic cars, motorcycles, and of course the big trucks. They sponsor the ‘Dynamic Engine Brake Competition’, along with many other events. You can enter your rig or just enjoy the day at the county fair.
There is a flat fee of $40.00 to enter your truck, payable before or at the show. Though space is limited! If you’re entering a double, you must pre-register (due to space limitations).
For more information call (605) 354-2809 or visit www.wheeljamtruckshow.com.
5. WALCOTT TRUCKERS JAMBOREE
When: July 14-16, 2016
Where: Iowa 80 Truck stop in Walcott, Iowa.
The Truckers Jamboree is hosted every year at the Iowa 80 Truckstop (I-80 Exit 284). They have been celebrating and honoring America’s truckers since 1979! They say this event is their way of say thank you for providing a much needed service.
This event is much more than just that; they have antique trucks on display, truck beauty contest, a pork chop cookout, carnival style games, live music, and much more. The best part about this event… Free admission and free parking!
For more information call (563) 284-6961 or visit www.iowa80truckstop.com.
6. TRUCK FUNCTION IN JUNCTION
When: July 16, 2016
Where: Junction City, Oregon.
The Truck Function is a smaller local show; this year will be their 4th event. But don’t let that stop you from enjoying the local flavor of the friendly community as they celebrate America’s trucking industry.
Registration is simple, just show up have proof of insurance and join the fun.
For more information call (541) 954-0762, or visit www.truckfunctioninjunction.com.
7. TOP GUN LARGE CAR SHOOTOUT
When: July 29-31, 2016
Where: Rantoul National Aviation Center in Rantoul, Illinois.
The Top Gun Large Car Shootout will be having their 9th annual show. Each year they get bigger & better! They pride themselves in being centered on the working class truck, driver, sponsors, and venders. They have a variety of events and other activities for your enjoyment.
Unlike many events, they have “acres and acres of show parking”. It is not necessary to pre-register just show up and enjoy the event!
For more information call (217) 202-1473 or visit www.topgunlargecarshootout.com.
8. JOPLIN 44 TRUCKERS JAMBOREE
When: August 5-6, 2016
Where: Joplin 44 Petro Truck Stop in Joplin, Missouri.
The Joplin 44 Truckers Jamboree is another fun event. There will food and display booths set-up. This event has more than just big trucks though; they have classic cars, venders, and other related items on display and for purchase.
Registration is simple. If you want to rent a booth prices vary, so check their site to learn more.