“Operation: Big Wheels for Heroes,” a Bestpass interactive fundraiser that promotes a positive image of the trucking industry, exceeded its goal of raising funds to support a wreath-laying event honoring war veterans at Arlington National Cemetery.
The Wreaths Across America (WAA) event was held on September 27, 2014 in Albany, NY, in part with the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) and the New York State Motor Truck Association (NYSMTA).
The goals of the touch-a-truck fundraiser included honoring truck drivers, emergency workers and veterans; raising pubic awareness of the trucking industry; and raising enough money to sponsor a truckload of wreaths through the TCA’s Truckload of Respect program.
“The public response of more than 500 attendees was tremendous, and all three of those goals were met with huge success,” said Alison Knowlton, director of communications for Bestpass.
Families and participants had fun interacting with heavy equipment, trucks, emergency vehicles as well as several pieces of construction equipment – including an excavator used in 9/11 recovery efforts – all staffed by professional operators.
“Events like this, that allow the public to get hands on and learn about the working trucks and drivers, help to dispel negative stereotypes and foster positive public image our industry deserves,” said Kendra Hems, president of NYSMTA.
Over the next several weeks, Bestpass will be compiling a “lessons learned” document with the intention of producing an ‘event-in-a-box’ program that can be used to help other trucking associations organize similar events.
“In the 23 years I’ve served trucking technology vendors in a public relations capacity I have never seen an event that did more for positive public awareness than this one,” said Susan Fall, president of Launchlt Public Relations.