TOLEDO, Ohio — While the Toledo Jeep Fest has been attracting Americans with Jeep pride from all over the country since 2016, this year, it's drawn a man from across the pond.
Willem van Holten bought his first Jeep in 1980 and has driven one ever since.
The self-proclaimed "Jeeper" has Jeep events in the U.S. before, but 2022 will be his first year making a pit stop in the Glass City at what he called "one of the biggest parties in the world."
He said he scheduled a showing at the Toledo Jeep Fest after spending three months touring the U.S. and seeing regions like the East Coast, West Coast and everything in between.
Stopping in Toledo won't just be special for van Holten, though. It will be special for his Jeep as well.
His Jeep was made in Toledo he said, and "has been shipped all over the world" ever since, the traveling Jeeper said.
He's bringing his beloved vehicle back "to where it was born."
He also received his first rubber duck, in the WTOL 11 parking lot, to go with his Jeep, a trend among the Jeep community that involves Jeepers gifting each other with the squeaky bathroom toy as a way to brighten someone's day and say, "hey, nice Jeep."
In 2021, Jeepers from 37 different states attended the annual Jeep Fest.