The Iowa Collision Repair Association (ICRA) is sponsoring the Midwest Auto Body Trade Show in Altoona, Iowa, to be held on March 28, 2012 at Prairie Meadows. This will be the second year the association has put on the show.
“We surveyed all participating vendors from last year’s efforts, and they unanimously wanted to come back this year," said Mark Martin of Ankeny Auto Body.
The new name of the show reflects the fact that it has expanded and is now open to collision repairers, insurers, vendors and students from neighboring states.
“Last year, we had educational programs and the trade show,” says Janet Chaney, executive director of ICRA. "This year, the board of directors has chosen to focus on the trade show and bringing relevant product information to repairers, giving them the opportunity to see everything available to them in one place.”
The show will be the largest and most comprehensive all-collision trade show in the Midwest, with floor space double what it was last year. There are currently more than 45 booths committed, and several Iowa community college collision repair programs are planning to participate. A small stage and educational platform on the showroom floor will allow for product demonstrations.
With an eye toward the future of the collision repair industry, manufacturers will be showing the latest equipment and information to address the challenges of new technology, both in the automobile and in the front office.
There will also be gift certificates, special attendee show discounts and door prizes. Custom cars will be on the floor to satisfy that artistic "itch" that many collision repairers have.
"This is a great venue for our industry to get together and learn more about what we do,” said ICRA President Dale Wilgenbusch of Avalon Body Shop in Rickardsville, Iowa. “There is always so much to gain at one of these events.”
The Midwest Auto Body Trade Show hours will be 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Admission is free.