TOLEDO, Ohio — It's back! Toledo Jeep Fest will return during the weekend of Aug. 6, on track to welcome Jeep enthusiasts to the city of Toledo – HOME of the Jeep – once again, organizers announced Wednesday.
While the event took a year off in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, event organizers say they are optimistic that the 80th celebration can be done safely late this summer, with the majority of Jeep Fest activity happening outdoors.
"The great news is it's outside, we can socially distance, we'll probably all be wearing masks for a while. So yeah, we're optimistic its going to be a really great, safe event like it's always been," said Randy Oostra, President and CEO of ProMedica Health System.
Retired Jeep Plant Manager and Toledo Jeep Fest Board Member Jerry Huber says having ProMedica as a sponsor works as a conscience on the healthcare side of things.
"We've got a good resource bank to make the right decisions and do this thing properly and make sure everyone has a good time and is safe," said Huber.
Up until about earlier this month, the board still considered cancelling Jeep Fest again this year.
"We weren't going to do it. And then we kept chewing on it and watching how things were evolving with the COVID-19 thing, we thought it might be a good time for our whole country to have a celebration and honor the men and women who make these Jeeps everyday," said Local 12 President and Toledo Jeep Fest Board Member Bruce Baumhower.
The All-Jeep Parade will take place on Saturday, August 7.
Registration is now open to the public and the first 300 registrants will be registered to win a set of tires from BFGoodrich.
Early registrations include a free Toledo Jeep Fest Participant T-Shirt and are priced at $55 per Jeep from now until July 6 or until spots are sold out. Registration for the parade will close on Sunday, Aug. 1 at 11:55 p.m.
"The Jeep brand is celebrating eight decades of capability, innovation and an underlying sense of adventure this year, and Toledo Jeep Fest will provide a fitting and proud backdrop for 80th anniversary activities," Jeep Fest organizers said.
Dana Incorporated and ProMedica will return as presenting sponsors of the fourth Toledo Jeep Fest. As part of the sponsorship, Dana will have a large semi-trailer on display at the festival in August showcasing Dana products.
Official vendor and parade registration is now open at ToledoJeepFest.com and spots are being sold quickly.
2019 JEEP FEST FACTS
- Jeepers from 32 states, Washington DC, Canada, Czech Republic attended
- More than 70,000 came to the festival
- More than 1,400 Jeeps were part of the 20-block all-Jeep festival and show
- More than 100 local and national vendors took part
- During the entire weekend in 2019, Toledo officials said that more than 100,000 people traveled downtown to take part in various activities.
In 1941, Willys-Overland won a significant United States military contract to design the Willys MB, a four-wheel drive utility vehicle that was manufactured throughout World War II.
Today, Toledo is the only place in the world making the iconic Jeep Wrangler. Fiat Chrysler Automobile’s Toledo Assembly Complex is one of the region’s largest and most modern manufacturing plants.
For 80 years, Jeep has been touching the lives of Toledoans and in August 2021, the City will celebrate that rich history.