GATS 2014: What to expect this weekend in Dallas

| Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The 16th annual Great American Trucking Show is set for this weekend, Aug. 21-23, in Dallas, Texas. According to Weather.com, Dallas will be sunny and hot, with a high of 98 degrees starting tomorrow throughout the weekend. The good news is that the event is held indoors, at the air-conditioned Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Center.

More than 500 exhibitors will be representing truck, trailer, engine, component and parts manufacturers, in addition to a variety of services geared toward the heavy and medium-duty truck industry.

OOIDA’s booth will be located in Hall F. Several broadcasts will be airing live from there, hosted by Mark Reddig for “Land Line Now.” Reddig, along with other moderators and panelists, will be broadcasting the Future of Trucking Summit 2: The Truck of Tomorrow on Sirius XM’s Road Dog Channel on Aug. 22 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Shell Lubricants booth No. 19081.

Red Eye Radio, at booth No. 23158 in the main lobby, will be featuring appearances by country music artists John King, Zane Williams and Tony Justice. Captain Edgar Hansen, chief engineer and deck boss on the Discovery Channel’s “Deadliest Catch,” will also be at the Red Eye Radio booth signing autographs. Don’t forget the Trucker Talent Search on Friday at 5 p.m. where Brad James, Jennie Simpson and Keith Sampson will compete for the first-place prize.

Among the other celebrities at this year’s GATS will be country singer Lee Ann Womack. Also appearing will be Hollywood driver stuntman and OOIDA Member Mike Ryan (“Training Day,” “Fast Five” and “Furious 6”) at the Overdrive booth No. 21143 and professional bull rider Douglas Duncan at the Peak Commercial & Industrial booth No. 16124.  

This year at GATS the Trucking Solutions Group will be hosting their annual blood drive in partnership with the American Red Cross on Friday, Aug. 22, and on Saturday, Aug. 23, during show hours in booth No. 5057. On Saturday, Aug. 23, a driver health walk will be held in conjunction with TA/Petro. The group will be gathering in front of the convention center at 9 a.m. and stop by the parking lot to pick up drivers from that location. The walk will proceed to Dealey Plaza, the site of the President John F. Kennedy assassination, and back to the convention center. TA/Petro will be providing water and cooling towels for the walk.

The Healthy Trucking Association of America have teamed up with OraSure Technologies and AbbVie for a national campaign called Truckers Rolling Against Hepatitis C. Launching during GATS, the campaign strives to educate truckers about the hepatitis C virus and to encourage testing. Local testing events will take place across the nation through fall. For more information, visit the Health & Wellness Pavilion booth No. 23113.

Throughout the weekend, Texas Trucking Association will be hosting free SmartSessions seminars for truckers to improve their business. In addition to the SmartSessions seminars, there will also be free workshops by Partners in Business. These workshops will focus on the best ways to reduce cost and increase revenue. 

Pay attention to the many booths at GATS as there will be giveaways all weekend. One giveaway includes a $1,500 special edition American Trucker Tribute .44-caliber Magnum Big Boy. A tractor-trailer is engraved on the receiver with a banner that reads “Truckers Move America.” On the other side of the receiver is a convoy on a tree-lined highway with the words “Bound For Glory.” Only GATS attendees are eligible for the contest. 

Pride & Polish will be announcing the champion of this year’s Truck Beauty Contest National Championship Series. The awards ceremony will take place on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Pride & Polish stage in Hall E.

Plenty of parking and shuttle buses will be available.

For more information and directions to GATS, visit www.gatsonline.com.

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