MADISON, Wis. (PRESS RELEASE) – On September 16, dozens of law enforcement officials will escort hundreds of trucks along Interstate 41 from Richfield (Exit #60) to Oshkosh (Exit #113) to raise funds for Special Olympics Wisconsin (SOWI) athletes as part of the 13th Annual Truck Convoy for Special Olympics.
State Attorney General Brad Schimel will also be on hand for the Opening Ceremony to address the crowd and honor America’s truck drivers. In fact, this event marks the end of National Truck Driver Appreciation Week (September 10-16) and pays tribute to some of Special Olympics’ biggest supporters—the men and women who move America. The event also gives SOWI and the trucking community a chance to say thanks to the state’s amazing law enforcement personnel as September 16 is also National Thank a Police Officer Day.
Truckers will register at the Pioneer Travel Plaza in Richfield (3230 Pioneer Rd, Richfield, WI 53076) starting at 6:30 a.m. Drivers put a lot of time—and elbow grease—into preparing their trucks for the big day. Some trucks will arrive with banners hanging from their grills, others even use painter’s tape on their trailers to show their support. Truckers look to this event every year with anticipation and some will be coming from as far as Georgia, Oklahoma, Texas and even Florida just to participate.
“On behalf of the folks at Blue Leasing and those throughout the trucking industry, I can say we’re thrilled the Truck Convoy is here again. This is always one of the events I personally look forward to the most every year. The energy is awesome and I love how everyone comes together around this great cause,” said Trev Timblin, owner of trucking freight company Blue Leasing Corporation. Timblin has been involved in the Truck Convoy for eight years and was selected as Parade Marshal at this year’s Waupun Truck-N-Show, a Truck Convoy Founding Partner.
A short Opening Ceremony and live auction to determine lead truck spots will be held at 9:15 a.m. at the Pioneer Travel Plaza. 2017 Miss Harbor Cities, Alyssa Bohm, will serve as emcee. SOWI athlete Tiffany Berndobler of Beaver Dam will serve as the Athlete Convoy Marshal after winning the Athlete Art Contest. At 10:15 a.m., law enforcement squad cars will escort the trucks on their 53-mile journey northbound along Interstate 41.
Families will cheer on the truckers from frontage roads along the route to their destination at the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) (3000 Poberezny Road in Oshkosh, WI) at approximately 11:00 a.m. The day will wrap up with a celebration party complete with awards, raffles, an auction and tailgate party. Berndobler’s “Thank you for opening your hearts to Special Olympics athletes” artwork will adorn each of the awards given out to participants.
In 2016, a record 204 trucks participated and raised almost $124,000 for the more than 10,000 Special Olympics athletes in Wisconsin. Since 2005, Wisconsin’s Convoy has raised $1,085,374 with a total of 1,641 trucks participating! Organizers hope to set a new record in the 13th annual event.
Special Olympics programs across America will host similar events to celebrate truckers. The event takes place in 13 states and four Canadian provinces in partnership with the Law Enforcement Torch Run®, a volunteer movement established by members of the law enforcement community to raise funds and build awareness of Special Olympics.
“The trucking community, the law enforcement community and Special Olympics Wisconsin have a very strong relationship and the Truck Convoy really showcases that,” Timblin said.
The event would not be possible without the support of platinum partner E.H. Wolf & Sons; guardian partners Quad/Graphics, Wisconsin Towing Association and XPO Logistics; founding partners, the Law Enforcement Torch Run, Wisconsin Motor Carriers Association and the Waupun Truck-N-Show; Convoy hosts, the Pioneer Travel Plaza and the EAA; and National Fuel Partner CITGO.
For more information, please contact:
Tammy Hahn, director of marketing
(608) 442-5903 (office)/(608) 770-1866 (cell)