As most truck show attendees know, truck show season is filled with plenty of shows for every taste and the list of events throughout the season is almost endless. One popular show in the industry is nestled in Tonkawa, OK at Wilkins Oklahoma Truck Supply, and this one is proudly promoted as a “no show truck show” type of deal (there is no competition and no trophies). 2019 marked the 9th year the Wilkins family has hosted their Busted Knuckle Truck Show, and with approximately 270 trucks in attendance, this was their largest turnout to date!
For those who don’t know, Wilkins Oklahoma Truck Supply is family-owned and operated by three generations of the Wilkins family, which began in 1987 as a father-son partnership comprised of Clifford and Brett Wilkins. Hailed as one of the most extensive truck parts facilities, especially hard-to-find parts for older Peterbilts, their famous 50-foot tall sign grabs plenty of attention from the passing traffic on interstate 35. This sign, constructed from an actual semi-truck and trailer which is cemented nose-down in the ground, is one of their notorious projects, along with several detailed restorations of vintage trucks (one of which graced the cover of 10-4 back in April 2005).
Previously residing in Missouri (I recently moved to Georgia), this show was an easy decision to attend for me. After a nice stroll to Oklahoma, I arrived on Friday afternoon, September 20th, and was greeted by a bunch of trucks and many friends already there. Approximately 150 trucks rolled out of the grounds for a convoy on Friday night that began around 6:00 PM, which included my longtime friend Dennis Durand of Jade Trucking out of Manitoba (Canada) and his dark green 2017 Kenworth W900.
Other recognizable trucks that were in attendance included Rodney Farber and Matilda, his ‘76 Bicentennial Kenworth W900A, Darren Friedrichsen of Fleenor Bros. with his two-tone teal green 2020 Kenworth W900, Beau Kloeppel and his maroon 2016 Peterbilt 389 glider and Nic Baker of Jeff & Kim Baker Trucking with his cream and mocha 2016 Kenworth W900. My friend Troy Huddleston of RoadWorks Manufacturing was also in attendance with Lucky 13, the company’s black, silver and lime green show-attending Peterbilt 389 pulling their nice product display trailer.
Friday had initially shown a threat of rain, but it stayed away for attendees to not only enjoy the truck parade, but also enjoy the live entertainment of the Jason Callahan Band. On Saturday, September 21st, I arrived early enough to walk the entire grounds and see all the trucks in attendance. There was truly something for everyone, with a wide variety of trucks and styles on the grass. The sun decided not to make an appearance that day, but it was a good day, nonetheless. Something we all could have done without were the high winds that kicked up on Saturday, but that didn’t stop anyone from attending the show and/or having fun.
Something else worth checking out at the Wilkins Oklahoma Truck Supply facility is a fenced-in grassy lot, holding a large variety of antique trucks, just to the right as you come in the entrance to the property. Just looking at them you can see the potential they have and imagine what they looked like back in the day. This fenced-in lot is what the owners of Wilkins Oklahoma Truck Supply consider their scrap yard, holding parts and potential projects for their future restoration endeavors. If those trucks could talk, just imagine the stories they could tell!
At this event, I saw something else you don’t normally see at a truck show – a cute little newborn calf named Qinnie. She had a bit of a rough start and needed to be fed by bottle, so instead of missing the show, Jess Masquelier, girlfriend of previously mentioned Darren Friedrichsen, drove to the show with Qinnie in tow so the regular feedings could still be done. Attendees could see this calf if they walked by, as it was kept near where Darren’s truck was parked.
This was certainly a great event to experience, and I look forward to the next opportunity to attend this show. There was something for everyone who attended, with plenty of trucks to see, a variety of foods, vendors to visit, an inflatable jump house for the kids plus an amazing number of prizes given away. It is always fun to experience a show for the first time, and I find it always nice to see a show that becomes an annual “family” event where friends and family, from near and far, meet up to visit and enjoy each other’s company. I have been to several shows where it is the only time some get the opportunity to see each other all year.
I remember our co-founder of 10-4 Magazine, Erik Sieben, speaking highly of this event and the Wilkins family – it was one of the shows he always looked forward to attending when he could. I remember asking him about it earlier this year, as I was set to attend. My only regret is not being able to witness him in his element at a show, as we were seemingly at different events or had prior obligations which never allowed us to actually work together. But I believe he is watching us at the shows, smiling and cheering us on, while we are doing our jobs.
Special thanks go out from Wilkins Oklahoma Truck Supply to Valley Chrome, Rockwood, Dynaflex, United Pacific, Grand General, Real Wheels, Phoenix, RoadWorks, Lincoln Chrome, Roadsknz, Cab Fresh, Merritt, RCI, Maxxima, Minimizer, Hogebuilt, Chippewa, Pro-Tech, Zephyr, Magnum, DAS-RoadPro, Dometic, SH Tube, Big Rig Tees, Shift, Twisted Shifterz, A Ward, Doonan Truck, Easy Reach, Fibertech, Iowa Customs, Lifetime Nut Covers, Midwest Sheet Metal, PDC, Vel-Ray, Robert James, Sears Seating, Steering Creations, Sure Plus, Teltek, Trux, 12 Ga. Customs, Renegade, Over Size Warning, 10-4 Magazine and Large Car Magazine for all their support, sponsorships and donations, along with everyone who participated or attended their 2019 event. Because of you, the 2019 show was not only awesome, but a complete success.
Thank you to Kimber and Kyla Wilkins for being both helpful and welcoming in my attendance to the 2019 Busted Knuckle Show. Busted Knuckle is always the third weekend in September, so mark your calendars for next year, as this “no show truck show” will be happening on September 18-19, 2020. As always, to all the drivers out there doing the deal, truck safe.