Expo 2003 was a shining success despite the blackout that later
tested the patience of attendees trying to return home.
last week at the Detroiter Truck Stop in Woodhaven, MI, the Expo
featured 30 to 40 exhibitors. Attendance was up an estimated 15
percent from last year’s show, and the event netted positive reviews
for its organizers, Expediters Online and On Time Media. OOIDA was
a sponsor of the event.
OOIDA members took home at least half the trophies in the Expediter
Pride Truck Image Contest.
Scott, an OOIDA member from Norwood, MA, took first place in the
cargo van division. He hauls from Menlo Expediting. Second and third
places went to Patrick Hinnegan of Tri-State Expedited Services
Inc. and David Nykamp of FedEx Custom Critical.
member Bill Sturgis took first place in the straight truck division.
He is leased to FedEx Custom Critical. Second place went to Morean
Morris, also of FedEx Custom Critical. Sharon and John Guthmiller,
OOIDA members from Franklin, TN, placed third. The Guthmillers run
for Con-Way Now.
blackout seen ‘round the world
Expo 2003 came to an end around 4 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 14, as exhibitors
packed up a little early and organizers began their final cleanup.
According to Jeff Jensen at Expediters Online, the outdoor show
was being run by generators, so organizers didn’t know about the
blackout until someone drove by about 4:15 p.m. and told them about
radio personality Dave Nemo, who was in attendance and conducted
live interviews with the attendees and exhibitors for his XM Satellite
Radio program, told Jensen he found himself standing in line at
the electronic check-in kiosk at Southwest Airlines when the lights
went out. The airlines ended up canceling all flights, kicking everyone
out and closing the airport.
the airport closing, I didn't know what to do until morning,” Nemo
told Jensen. “I called around, and there were no motels available,
and even if there were a room to be found, what would you have?
A dark room with no a/c and no water.”
tried to re-rent the car he had just turned in, but he was turned
away after an hour and a half in line. He then ran into Ty Morgan,
a man from TMI Multimedia whom Nemo had lunch with during the show.
Since both men were trying to return home to Nashville, TN, they
borrowed a car from Morgan’s boss, who lived near Detroit, and drove
back to Nashville, arriving about the same time as their original
added, “I made it to the studio just in time to be interviewed on
my own show by Rusty Wheeler, my assistant, who had been filling
in for me.”
Director of Marketing, Mike Schermoly, found himself stuck as well.
“I was supposed to fly home but that wasn’t going to happen. So
after spending the night at a dark, crowded hotel, I just commandeered
the rental car and got in and started driving until I saw lights,”
says Schermoly, who ended up in Chicago.
René Tankersley, feature editor
Tankersley can be reached at email@example.com.