Iowa 80 Truckstop gets ready for Walcott Truckers Jamboree

June 21, 2021

Land Line Staff


The Iowa 80 Truckstop is gearing up for its blowout celebration of professional truck drivers, the Walcott Truckers Jamboree.

The Jamboree is scheduled for July 8-10 at the Iowa 80 Truckstop in Walcott. The fun can be found at Exit 284 from I-80 in eastern Iowa.

The Jamboree last year was celebrated online because of the coronavirus restrictions. In 2019, though, there were 45,000 in-person attendees, reports a representative of the Iowa 80 Truckstop.

OOIDA’s tour trailer and its skipper, Marty Ellis, are scheduled to attend the 2021 Walcott Truckers Jamboree. Ellis says he has been to the Jamboree a couple of times promoting the South Dakota Special Olympics Convoys and had a great time there.

“It was a great time for that, and I can’t wait to experience it working with OOIDA,” Ellis said.

Admission and parking are free. More than 175 exhibits are expected, plus classic rock and country music performances, fireworks, Iowa Pork Chop Cookout and an Antique Truck Display.

Events at the Jamboree

The Super Truck Beauty Contest is the centerpiece of the Jamboree.

This is a competition for full-size tractor-trailers. Truck space is allocated on a first-come, first-served basis and is free of charge. Truck move-in is on Tuesday and Wednesday, July 6-7. Judging is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. on Thursday, July 8. Awards will be presented at 3 p.m. on Saturday. Trucks will be on display until 5 p.m. Saturday, July 10.

As with the Super Truck Beauty contest, exhibit space at the Antique Truck Display Exhibit will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis and is free. Move in is on July 7, and the trucks will be on display until 5 p.m. on Saturday. There will be security on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday nights. Sign up here.

The Trucker’s Best Friend Pet Contest is a traditional Jamboree event. Categories to be judged are best dressed, best trick and owner look-a-like. Judging is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Friday, July 9. Sign up here.

Another favorite event is the Trucker Olympics, scheduled for two hours starting at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. It features family reunion type games that have been trucker-fied.

Trucker Olympics events:

  • Tire roll, where competitors must roll a tire straight for a certain distance.
  • Water cup race, where competitors must run around obstacles without spilling the water.
  • Strong man/woman, where competitors must pull a 12,000-pound antique cement truck a certain distance.
  • Water balloon toss, where a team of competitors tosses a water-filled balloon. The team that tossed the balloon the farthest apart wins.
  • Strap winding, a timed competition.

At the Iowa 80 Trucking Museum, a 100th birthday party is scheduled for a 1921 International Harvester at 2:30 p.m. on Friday.


Still going after 42 years

The Walcott Truckers Jamboree began in 1979. The truck stop is east of the Quad Cities area in Iowa at Exit 284 from I-80.

The Iowa 80 Truckstop was established in 1964. It has eight restaurants, a Super Truck Showroom and a variety of services. It claims to be the “world’s largest truck stop.”

The Iowa 80 Group of truck stops also includes the Kenly 95 Petro in Kenly, N.C.; the Oak Grove 70 Petro in Oak Grove, Mo., and the Joplin 44 truck stop in Joplin, Mo. LL