With all of the cancellations of physical events and adding of new virtual events in their stead, it may not come as a surprise to many that the Used Truck Association (UTA) is changing the UTA Convention, set on November 4th to the 7th, into a fully virtual event. What may be surprising is that they are redoing the event from the ground-up.
The UTA has already stated that sponsors for the originally planned UTA Convention, which is now scrapped, can either apply for a refund or apply the ticket forward to the 2021 physical UTA Convention. The same goes for members who have registered and paid for their tickets. If you already have a ticket, the Used Truck Association will contact you and ask for your decision.
UTA’s board of directors and convention committee is working to develop a virtual event itinerary. More information will be available in the weeks and months to come, UTA says.
Is rebuilding the entire convention to fit a virtual environment better than retrofitting events to a virtual space? Chances are yes. If the convention took place on a massive lot, which it probably would have, fitting a used heavy-duty truck into a camera space is significantly harder than it sounds.
History of the UTA and Convention
The UTA describes itself on its website as, “an impartial organization comprised of used truck professionals and associated businesses committed to strengthening the used truck industry.” Simply put, it is mostly a network of independent used truck dealerships, plus others that are directly involved in such activities.
The UTA is currently led by president Craig Kendall, who also owns his own dealership known as the Pete Store. He is supervised by a board of directors originating from various parts of the country.
The convention is to be the 21st annual convention, and is presumably the first to be held entirely online now. It was originally planned to be held in Atlanta, Georgia, but due to the coronavirus pandemic is now being moved to be a fully virtual event.
At this time few details are known regarding the brand new virtual event. Chances are tickets will cost money, but probably be significantly cheaper than tickets to a physical convention. At the very least, attendees will save significant money on travel and lodging expenses.
With all of these different events either being replaced, reworked, postponed, or canceled completely, it is an apt question to ask when the COVID-19 pandemic will officially come to an end. As lockdown restrictions ease and tighten again, the answer is really hard to say. What we can say is that the trucking industry has been surviving and thriving.