2008 Parade Results (November 9, 2008)
2009 Parade Results (November 8, 2009)
2010 Parade Results (November 14, 2010)
2010 Janesville (Decemebr 11, 2010)
2011 Parade Results (November 13, 2011)
2012 Parade Results (November 11, 2012)
2012 Trip to New York (November 23-25, 2012)
Tow Trucks for Tots is a not-for-profit organization created by Pat Winer, owner of Worldwide Equipment Sales, LLC. His vision is to help less fortunate children who could not enjoy a Christmas morning full of toys. Pat enlisted the help of the tow truck community and thus began Tow Trucks for Tots. Towers from Illinois and surrounding states have joined together and with Pat's guidance, along with help from the Toys for Tots program, the Tow Truck for Tots parade took its maiden voyage on November 9, 2008 traveling over 40 miles from the Empress Casino in Joliet, IL to Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL to bring awareness to their cause.
Pat had three main goals for the parade:
1. To bring a much needed toy to a very deserving boy or girl.
2. To enhance the public's image of towing operators everywhere.
3. To make a new entry in the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest tow truck parade.
With its maiden voyage, Pat's dream had been met and exceeded. All three of his goals were acknowledged and welcomed by the community. The towing community banded together in support of this much needed cause. Towers from as far away as Indiana, Missouri, Michigan, Wisconsin and other adjoining states have made the trip to Illinois for the event.
We are happy to announce that our first parade made the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest tow truck parade with 239 tow trucks, beating the old record set at 83 tow trucks in Washington, 2004.
On November 8, 2009 the second annual Tow Trucks for Tots parade left the Caterpillar parking lot in Joliet and traveled over 40 miles to Toyota Park in Bridgeview. This time, there were more towers and more toys to be seen. Months prior to the event, towers from Illinois and surrounding areas were all talking about the event. Web sites and blog's such as Facebook, Tow411.net, and Twitter were buzzing about the parade, what was planned for this year and how towers would decorate their trucks in preparation.
With more towers contributing came greater rewards. Toy counts rose and exceeded the prior year's parade as well as the number of towers united towards the goals set by Pat Winer. The 2nd parade beat the first years record with 309 tow trucks and 340 trucks over-all.
With such great success, Pat extended his dream out of Illinois to Elkhart, Indiana. At the time, the town of Elkhart had the highest unemployment rate in the nation. Pat saw this as an opportunity to help out the town and its community. Parade organizers and towers from Illinois and Indiana made the two hour drive to Elkhart a few weeks before Christmas. They delivered toys to the city of Elkhart, Indiana. The city of Elkhart gave the toys to non profit organizations such as the salvation army, Lobe Center and others to help the children. The city of Elkhart was very thankful and gracious of Pat Winer and the Tow Truck for Tots donations.
On November 14, 2010, the Third Annual Tow Trucks For Tots parade left Splash Station Water Park in Joliet, IL at 9am and traveled over 40 miles to Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL. There were a total of 262 tow trucks in the parade. Not enough to break our Geniuses Book of World Records, but enough toys were collected to make a lot of children very happy during the holiday season. Two towing companies Chariot Automotive of Countryside, IL and Grosse Pointe Towing of Northbrook, IL had fundraiser's prior to the parade. Their fundraiser's raised thousands of dollars to purchase toys for the children. At Raging Waves, Christmas music played throughout while Dick’s Towing of Joliet, IL setup free coffee and donuts at 5am to feed the hungry towers lined up for the parade. Bob Skrocki, Ambassador Car Carriers of Orland Park, IL presented the pledge of allegiance. Mick O'Sullivan of Worldwide Equipment Sales did the driver’s meeting. At 9am the Illinois State Police lined up and the flag was dropped and the trucks were off. As the trucks left for the parade route people were standing on the roadsides and on the over pass of I-55 cheering the trucks on. There was one lone solider giving a full salute to each and every driver in the parade. Over one of the over passes tow truckers were lining up in formation giving honor to the drivers in the parade. At Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL the drivers and volunteers were given a free lunch while the Street Corner Blues Band played. Sparky the Chicago Fire Mascot took pictures with the towers and their trucks. Toyota Park showed last year’s parade on the Jumbo Tron TVs. Around 2pm the last truck left the parking lot and the parade was complete.
The Tow Truck for Tots Parade has become one of the most anticipated events in the towing community. We would like to thank all of the towers, their families, suppliers, volunteers and sponsors who have helped make this parade a great success. It truly can't be put on without your help. Thank you for everything that has been done and we look forward to seeing everyone at each parade.
Your help is crucial to this programs success.
If you or your business would like to sponsor Tow Trucks for Tots, please call or send an e-mail message to Pat Winer:(815)725-4400 firstname.lastname@example.org
A sincere thank you to all of our current sponsors!