One of the favorite annual events for many in the trucking industry, and especially those who are fans of antique trucks, was one of many events to have been revamped due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The American Truck Historical Society announced its annual convention and truck show would not go on as planned in Springfield, Illinois, in late May.
ATHS had a solid backup plan, however, to hold its gathering online. The organization quickly shifted gears and held its educational sessions and annual meeting on Zoom. ATHS also staged its annual truck show as a series of 20 YouTube videos.
Each video spans a series of years, starting with one showcasing trucks from 1902 to 1929 and ending with one that includes trucks from 1996 to 2020. There’s also one for late entries that includes trucks from a variety of years.
The association is more than pleased with how the event went.
“ATHS takes great pleasure in leading the way in truck shows,” said Laurence Gration, ATHS executive director. “The first society to not cancel their show, the first to put it all online for the membership to view. It is pleasing to see others are now following our lead.”
Gration said the virtual convention and truck show went over “exceptionally well.” He said there have been almost 20,000 views across 37 countries looking at 1,455 trucks from 11 countries, including all 50 U.S. states.
In all, the 20 videos — all between 15 and 20 minutes long — showcase 1,455 trucks, each with identifying details.
Even shifting gears from in-person to strictly online, ATHS “expanded the show substantially, allowing anyone with a passion for old trucks to get their share,” Gration added.
He said the society is already working on how to integrate the technology learned this year into the live truck show in Harrisonburg, Virginia, next year.
Gration said ATHS is working at getting all of the convention and truck show posted and open to the public on YouTube. In the meantime, anyone can check-in at ATHS.org/convention and see what’s available for free.
Subscribe to Overdrive‘s Custom Rigs free weekly email newsletter to catch a decade-by-decade look over the next few weeks at the trucks that took part in ATHS’ virtual truck show, or check out all 20 videos on YouTube.