The Midwest Bus & Motorcoach Association will mark 10 years this summer. The milestone will be celebrated at the group’s 2021 Annual Convention, Trade Show, and Safety Competition on July 21-22 in Elkhart, Indiana.
The itinerary for the two-day event includes a tour of Cardinal Bus in nearby Middlebury, which is a founding member.
The original founding states were Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan and Missouri, says MBMCA Executive Director Cherie Hime. The association has grown to include members from Kansas, Ohio and Wisconsin.
“We’re just looking forward to continuing our networking and education through our annual convention and trade show,” Hime said.
10 years ago
MBMCA’s inaugural Annual Convention took place in November 2011 in Lisle, Illinois. The association was formed to bring together tour and travel, and school bus industries through networking, and education at its Annual Convention and Trade Show. The annual convention added a driver safety competition in year two, and the winner is sponsored by the association to participate in the United Motorcoach Association’s annual national safety competition.
MBMCA provides resources to raise awareness of:
- OEM and industry supplier contacts and technical information.
- Publications and position papers.
- Legislative and regulatory updates.
The online membership directory provides an avenue to connect with peers and solution providers, as well as targeted advertising.
In 2018, the association worked with national and regional associations to address the adverse effects of a charter/sightseeing ordinance in Chicago. The efforts increased awareness at the regulatory offices in Chicago about safety and regulations the passenger carrier industry has to comply with on a national level.
National awareness campaign
In 2020, the membership came together more than ever, with grassroots efforts to help the industry suffering the effects of COVID-19. This was accomplished through a nationwide awareness campaign, “Motorcoaches Rolling For Awareness,” in addition to thousands of emails, calls and letters sent to members of Congress.
The national effort proved one of the most recognized collaborative efforts in Washington, D.C. It garnered 68% support for the CERTS Act from congressional representatives and senators, the most support obtained by any bill in Congress that session.
In 2020, the association also moved forward with the Annual Convention and Trade Show on a smaller scale, providing the venue safely and free to all members who could attend. Even as everyone experienced a tremendously difficult 2020, support for the event was fantastic, organizers said, and the association is grateful for the continued support of its members.