Central Wisconsin Military Show Continues Iola Tradition
After twenty-five years and a cancellation, the Iola Vintage Military and Gun Show has been reborn.
Though the torch may have been dropped after the Iola’s cancellation earlier this year, it was quickly picked up by a large group of people dedicated to keeping the show going.
Renamed the Central Wisconsin Military Show, the rebranded event will take place August 12 from 8 a.m. to midnight.
“Basically this is a continuation. The show was very successful and very important to many people for a lot of years,” said Tom Zat, show organizer.
The venue has changed from its Iola location to the beautiful event grounds of Motorama Auto Museum in Aniwa, which also hosts camping sites. Despite the rebranding, annual show-goers will recognize the military vehicle show, featuring over sixty vehicles of any year, country, and manufacturer, and the swap meet (8-6 p.m.) of over seventy vendors.
New features include special trophies for show vehicles, a pin-up girl contest, and cash prizes. There will be plenty of food vendors to choose from, and attendees have free admission to the museum, which houses 400 rare and unusual vehicles from across the globe.
Supporting veterans is the single biggest reason to continue with the show, Zat said. The swap meet vendors include representatives from Veterans Affairs, Honor Flight, Veterans of Foreign Wars (which will host a rifle raffle), Army Reserve, Disabled American Veterans, Military Vehicle Magazine, and Veterans Hunt.
“We want the average person to come and see what these groups do for their servicemen and what the need is,” said Zat. There will also be military equipment displays, living history encampments, and guest speakers.
Come out for a chance to witness parades of military vehicles and vehicle judging. Live music by a British rock cover band begins Friday night until 11 p.m., and other bands continue to perform all day Saturday. Saturday night concludes with Broken Arrow, which will end their performance around midnight.
Even with the short time to organize, the event is jam-packed with a full day of vendors, food, music, and fun.
“We’re going to have one heck of a show,” said Zat.
Motorama Auto Museum
4381 Stradale Lane, Aniwa, Wisconsin 54408
Cost: $8.00 per person, children 12 & under free