From August 10-12, 2018, the City of Toledo will be the center of the Jeep universe.
The event is the 2018 Toledo Jeep® Fest, presented by Dana and ProMedica. But the celebration is much more than that. It’s enthusiasts from 27 states, Canada and Mexico celebrating their love for Jeep vehicles and an adventurous way of life – and, doing it in the city where the Jeep was invented and where its heart beats every day: Toledo, Ohio.
The first Toledo Jeep Fest – a one-day celebration in 2016 – was an unqualified success, bringing an estimated 40,000 people to downtown Toledo, which was the most for any event since the end of World War II.
Even with that high standard already established, the second Toledo Jeep Fest is set to be even bigger and even better. In fact, event organizers and downtown leaders expect as many as 60,000 people to be in town for the festivities, which have expanded to three days.
“The history of Jeep is the history of Toledo,” said Jerry Huber, a former plant manager at Jeep and a co-founder of Toledo Jeep Fest. “The community deserves a festival that’s as great as the vehicle we are celebrating, and with the incredible support of our community and sponsors, that’s what we are going to deliver.”
The 2016 event was a major happening for the City of Toledo. Beyond the large number of visitors to downtown, social media users from around the world learned about Toledo and Jeep. In fact, Toledo Jeep Fest was a trending topic nationally on Twitter.
The buzz is equally strong building up to this year’s event. In addition to hundreds of thousands of hits on the event website, the Facebook page has over 20,000 followers. A recent throwback Thursday post reached nearly 13,000 people with almost 700 reactions, comments and shares.
Community support is what fuels Toledo Jeep Fest forward. That starts with the title sponsors – Dana and ProMedica – and extends to more than 60 organizations that have provided cash or services to support the event. (See list below.)
Discussing Dana’s Toledo Jeep Fest sponsorship, Jeff Cole, spokesperson for Dana, said “Jeep is an iconic automotive brand, and Dana has been supplying its driveline products since the Jeep was born. Our team is excited to show off the great work they’ve been doing with our custom aftermarket Jeeps.”
Following the leadership of the presenting sponsors, Toledo Jeep Fest has benefitted from the support of dozens of other partners.
“Every local sponsor has increased their commitment this year,” Huber said. “In total, our three-day event has received more than double the support of the previous event. It is tremendously humbling.”
Importantly, based on the success in 2016, this year’s event has garnered support from larger regional and national vendors. More than 60 vendors including Dana, Tenneco, SPIDERWEBSHADE, Outlaw LED, Steinjäger, Sylvania Automotive, X-DIFF Gear & Axle, and Goodyear will stock the all-new Vendor Midway in downtown Toledo. This year’s Vendor Midway showcases these brands on and around St. Clair Street just north of the SeaGate Centre.
“One thing visitors will notice compared to 2016 is the development of our Vendor Midway,” Huber said. “We know that people love to customize their Jeeps, and the Vendor Midway is an opportunity for our Jeep enthusiasts to interact with the leading companies working in that space.”
Three Days of Jeep!
The signature event for the weekend is the All-Jeep Parade, which starts at 11 a.m. on Saturday. The parade will be a rolling tribute to Jeep, with over 1,300 vehicles registered – a longer parade than the original in 2016. The parade is sponsored by Charlie’s Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram and Grogan’s Towne Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram.
Following the parade, Toledo’s downtown streets will be transformed into the All-Jeep Festival & Car Show – a 20-block walking tour of the full breadth of the Jeep experience. Based on the 2016 festival, the All-Jeep vehicle show is also an opportunity for the Jeep community to meet and mingle.
Similar to 2016, the SeaGate Convention Centre will play host to futuristic Jeeps alongside rare, historic Jeeps that represent the resiliency and versatility that Jeep has shown over the last 77 years.
An all-new event this year is Friday’s Jeep Off-Road Course Welcome Party, hosted by the Monroe Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram Superstore. The welcome party will feature 18 obstacles and live music to kick the weekend off.
Toledo Jeep Fest is also offering visitors the opportunity to enter a raffle to win a host of Jeep-related products. The grand prize is a 24-month lease for a 2018 Jeep Wrangler “JL” Unlimited Sport 4 Door from Yark Automotive group. Tickets can be purchased online at ToledoJeepFest.com or at the event.
More than Jeeps
While the focus of the weekend is a celebration of the Jeep, event organizers have worked hard to create a family-friendly environment with the feel of a major festival.
That includes an even stronger selection of live music taking place on three stages: one at Promenade Park, one at the SeaGate Centre, and one at Levis Square on St. Clair Street. “Thanks to Rouen Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram for sponsoring all the entertainment and festivities happening in Promenade Park,” said Huber. “And, thanks to our friends at Sheet Metal Workers Local Union 33 for sponsoring all the entertainment and festivities happening in the SeaGate Convention Centre!”
The kick-off concert on Friday night will feature national headliner KC and the Sunshine Band at Promenade Park. The band, which began performing in 1973, will bring their entire catalog to town, including five number-one songs.
Saturday’s music lineup will kick off with The Infatuations, a band featuring “Funk, Soul, and Detroit Rock & Roll.” The Infatuations are winners of “Top Band” at the Detroit Music Awards and feature an unforgettably unique sound.
For the kids, Toledo Jeep Fest will feature the Kid’s Zone, which is being hosted by Imagination Station and will also offer activities from the Toledo Zoo and the Toledo Museum of Art. The Kid’s Zone is being sponsored by the National Electrical Contractors Association.
The Sunday portion of the festival will be highlighted by a 4-Mile Run and 1-Mile Walk, which is hosted by Run Toledo and sponsored by Sylvania Automotive.
Learn more details at ToledoJeepFest.com, or on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Remember to use the hashtags #ToledoJeepFest and #tjf2018 when you’re posting.