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Mission Statement: Together, we leverage the power of vehicles to create memories and transform lives.

How did we get here, and what does it mean?


Humble beginnings...

In 1972, Chet sent out a simple letter inviting a few friends to an afternoon hosted by the Iola Lions. About 20 cars gathered on the grass near Lake Iola to chat about the Old Cars Weekly publication that was started just the year before.  Just like that, the event was launched and in a matter of just a couple of years had grown so much in size and popularity it outgrew the park.  

In 1976 the event migrated to its current location, surrounding the growing Krause Publications operation, where it was becoming the premier swap meet in the Midwest.  It relied heavily on support from local organizations to manage parking, food services, garbage and other event hosting needs, and in 1984 was incorporated as Iola Old Car Show, Inc., a 501(c)(3) Charitable Non-Profit Corporation.



At the time of transition to 501(c)(3) in the mid 1980s, efforts were being led by 4 community organizations, including Iola Lions Club, Iola Fire Department, Iola Winter Sports Club and Iola-Scandinavia Jaycees. All of which have an interest in serving our community through their charitable efforts. As the crowds kept growing, naturally more help was needed, and the Community Organizations grew to 13, adding Iola American Legion, Iola Conservation Club, Iola Hospital Auxiliary, Norseman Snowmobile Club, Ogdensburg Fire Department, Sons of Norway, Stevens Point Old Car Club and the Waupaca VFW. Over time, more than 100 additional community organizations have been added to the ranks to assist in making our flagship event possible.  We are all working together to positively impact our community.

Those organizations gather volunteers to help operate the various jobs during the event, and the organizations receive proceeds from the event.  To date, Iola Old Car Show, Inc has issued more than $9 million to those volunteer organizations and community projects.


Here's a list of the community organizations who volunteer to increase their charitable giving.


Our Community

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