With the 2023 truck show season now in full swing, on the first weekend of June, I attended the Paul Riggle and Son’s Truck Show held in Apollo, PA. Besides MATS in Louisville, KY in March, this show is always the first one I have booked in my calendar to cover, and it never disappoints. Year after year, there is always cool stuff to see at this laid-back event. It’s great to see all the people who put this show together, and the people who bring the trucks to it.
Held on June 3, 2023, the weather was nice and very warm, in the mid-80s, and a little bit cloudy, making it a perfect day to be outside and view some cool trucks. There were 64 registered trucks and, all together, around 70 trucks on the lot. The country band Americana played classic country music, while attendees enjoyed several food options at the event. The coolest thing I found was the Chuck Wagon Old Fashioned Soda, operated by Dave and Cecelia Biggerstaff, and their homemade sodas and floats. Two great people I hope to see again, next year. Like my fellow 10-4 contributor Dennis Mitchell (The Veteran’s View), I like my ice cream, too!
As I pulled into the show to park, there was a 1980 Peterbilt 352 cabover that had a stainless steel van body on it. It got me wondering if it was a brother to Flatbed Red’s cabover. I took a picture of it and texted her. She asked where I was. Apparently, her truck and this truck are the same age and specs, and both came from the same fleet. Later in the day I finally got to meet the owner Shane (Red) Lantz of Apollo, PA. He told me about the truck, and how he and Flatbed Red have talked to each other about their matching trucks in the past and traded stories about them. Shane’s cab has been freshly painted, and he has some other projects to be started and finished. The truck looked really good, for sure.
Trent Clark of Breezewood, PA brought his replica “Goblin” truck from the 1986 movie Maximum Overdrive, which was directed by Stephen King. He recently purchased the truck on April 1st from Nate Lawrence who built this neat replica combo. It’s a 1977 White Western Star with an 8V-71 Detroit and dual 5-inch exhaust, pulling a 1977 Trailmobile 40-foot trailer, which is also a replica of the original (and the same year that was used in the movie).
Ben Stutzman of Somerset, PA brought a black 1980 W900A extended hood, with a Double Eagle sleeper, that is powered by a 3408 (V8) Cat. Mike Begonia of Apollo, PA was showing off his 1972 White day cab single axle. Painted flat black with a red frame, this unique little “Old Whitey” cabover is powered by a V8 Cummins with a 903 turbo. Starting out as a Lyons LTL truck, Mike bought it because it was different, and he likes to hear the old guys who owned one or drove one tell their stories. Mike built a custom exhaust and intake rack (the right side is the exhaust, and the left side is the intake) – but it looks like dual exhaust and dual intake. The truck has full fenders on the rear axles, and Mike made a stainless panel to fit between the pipes to cover the power steering reservoir and fuel filter.
The 10-4 cover truck for the May 2023 issue, driven by Richie Foster for Reinsfelder, was also there. The silver and white 2022 Pete 389 was sporting new double square headlights since the 10-4 cover photo shoot was done, and they were looking good. Richie is a very popular guy here, and with this event being held so close to his home, when he is not working his butt off, he tries to make the show as often as he can. In addition to Richie’s stellar ride, there were a few other Reinsfelder trucks there too, just like they are every year.
Shawn Barnhart was at the show with his white ‘99 Kenworth W900B, with a 50-inch flattop bunk, hooked to a curtainside flatbed trailer. Over the years I have covered this event, I have seen several of his cool looking KWs at this show. I was told by a few guys that Shawn shut the truck down on a Friday, stretched the frame from its original 245-inch wheelbase to 290 inches, and then had the truck back on the road working first thing Monday morning. That’s a quick turnaround!
The guys from Wright Truck Lines out of Akron, OH – Ross Wright and his son Wyatt, along with their driver John Huddleston – came to the show for the first time and brought their pneumatic trailers with them. Wyatt with a white 389, John with his purple 389, and Ross with his maroon 389 and polished trailer with the fenders now painted to match the truck (featured in our March 2021 edition). John had spent all day Friday washing and drying the trailers, which is a big job. As they were leaving the show, Matt Riggle stopped Ross to award him a trophy for the shiniest truck.
Patrick Jeffrey of Champion, OH brought out two Peterbilts – a flat black 1975 Peterbilt 352 and a 1968 Peterbilt 358 Little Window. The 352 is powered by a Cummins 350 with a 13-speed, and the 358 gets its motivation from a 400 Cummins Big Cam 3 and a 13 double over. Patrick flipped the 352 from the condition that he bought it in, to what it looks like today, in a matter of two months. He did the same with the 358, and both were looking very cool.
Richard Morchesky of Export, PA came out with four B model Macks and an iron nose Peterbilt. Richard has brought some cool old antique trucks over the years, and I have featured many of them in my past reports from this show. He has been collecting old trucks for a lot of years, and also runs a fuel hauling business. Brent Miller Trucking out of Allenwood, PA brought out a very cool blue 2000 W900L Kenworth, with a 60-inch flattop bunk, pulling a stainless steel refrigerated trailer. The W900L is powered by 7CZ 600-hp Cat motor with an 18-speed, and with 3.5 million miles already on the odometer, this was one very cool and classy working rig.
Matt Riggle builds a couple unique trophies each year for the show. This year, he started with a brake rotor, then added a connecting rod with a piston on top of it, then welded wrenches to both sides (they kinda looked like a little man). Each year the trophies are painted a different color. This non-judged show is pretty much a “bring what you got and show it off” type of event. The show is mostly held for drivers to get together, have fun, relax, and talk trucks.
I would like to thank all of those who came to the show and made it so much fun. I would also like to thank a friend of mine, Ben Bayne, who also came and introduced me to some people. This show is always cool, and every year it seems to be a little different, with new trucks to see and drool over. Thanks to those who bring their cool trucks out, because without them, there would be no truck show. So, make plans to attend next year’s Paul Riggle & Sons Truck Show – you won’t be disappointed. With cool trucks, good people, great food, and live music, what’s not to like!