There are additional stories to go along with this page. They are all being re-vamped. So, if you remember reading something here before, you probably did ... they are still located here in the Features Section. Lots to re-work and having to do it in pieces! ~ Editor
Lots of stories already posted in "The Hot Wash" portion of the Events Forum.
Handouts for when you cruise to an event
As requested, we made up a handout (several actually) you can copy and take with you when you got to an event. Let 'em know about the Virtual Garage and bring 'em into the fold! (These are pdf files. Metal Burst and Blue will take a lot of print ink. If you like it, you may want to run it off at an office supply place.)
A GABfest ... wazzat?
Stovebolters have been gathering on their own at a steady pace for over a decade. It all started with Montana Andy hosting a gathering in 2000. The "Texas Connection" shashayed soon afterward - a small group but your typical friendly Texans! We rallied Bolters at the ATHS National Show in Baltimore in May, 2006. That same year, the Southerners decided to try a Gathering of Bolters and they have grown so much, they have several southern groups. The British Columbia (Canada) Bolters have been meeting monthly for years now.
And ... every year in September, a large gathering of Bolters stream into middle of the country ... Kansas City, Missouri ... for THE Stovebolt event of the year -- The Annual Stovebolt Reunion! This year will be a big one - our 10th. We hope to plan caravans to circle on in and take the city!
Remember, Stovebolt is not a "club" ... yet, these Stovebolt Gatherings just came naturally! And your truck doesn't have to be done, running, or even put together. You don't have to bring your truck; you don't have to have a truck. Just gotta love 'em!
How a GABfest works
We target a good show to piggy back on. We found the best ones are shows that aren't so big or well-established that they would not be interested in our group gathering. The small to medium-sized shows seem to work well, as those shows appreciate our help in bringing in trucks that might not otherwise attend. Then, we identify a Stovebolt Coordinator (or two) for each particular GABFest. All a coordinator needs to do is make contact with the show staff to secure a parking area for the Bolters (hanging the Stovebolt flag), act as a show ombudsman for attending Bolters, make sure we get some photos of the event (especially a group shot), and hand out door prizes.
Clinics and other features
Some of the GABfests that have been around for a while have added camping, food, t-shirts, and sometimes they last a few days longer than the show! And we've even starting having technical clinics at our GABFests! Clinics to date, offered by Stovebolters to Stovebolters, have including metal fabrication & sheet metal repair, valve adjustment, dead engine starting and alternator rebuilding (think that's hard?? Wrenchbender Ret did it for the group on a picnic table!). To have a clinic or two, all you need is a subject matter expert willing to share a fairly simple procedure or task by walking participants through step-by-step.
This works because it happens at the grass roots! Members of the Stovebolt.com online community will need to determine, and coordinate, their own events. Here's a blow-by-blow from Alvin "AChipmunk" Parris, when he and David "Lucille" Wolfe were wondering about getting one started in South Carolina area back in 2008!
Are you game for a GABfest?
If you have a show you think would make a good venue for a GABfest and you are willing to coordinate Bolter attendance, let us know! Being a GABfest Coordinator isn't as hard as you think. The beauty is that you don't have to set up an event (that's done by whoever sets up the show you're attending / supporting / freeloading off of...). All you have to do is
So remember, whenever two or more 'Bolters are gathered... GABfest !!!!