Photos courtesy of Arizona Military Vehicle Collectors Club

The Arizona Military Vehicle Collector’s Club (AMVCC), a passionate group of military vehicle enthusiasts, is gearing up for their 33rd Annual Arizona Military Vehicle Show. This year’s event, a testament to the club’s commitment to preserving history, is scheduled for January 26 to 28, at the Peoria Sports Complex.

Founded in 1982, the AMVCC began as a small group of collectors passionate about military vehicles. Today, it has grown into a vibrant community of veterans and civilians alike, each dedicated to preserving and showcasing military transportation from World War I through Desert Storm and beyond. The club’s impressive collection includes Jeeps, mutts, mules, deuce-and-a-halfs, prime movers, troop carriers, half-tracks, command posts, and heavy wreckers.

These privately-owned vehicles, meticulously restored and maintained by club members, serve as a mobile museum, honoring those who served and fought from these historical machines. The AMVCC is not just about displaying these vehicles; they actively participate in parades, veteran services, car shows, and charity events, allowing the public to see, feel, and hear the echoes of the past.

The club’s first military vehicle show, organized by Rod Shaver in a Tempe parking lot in 1984, marked the beginning of an annual tradition. Over the years, the event outgrew several locations, including the Papago Military Museum parking lot and the National Guard Gymnasium, before settling into its current home at the Peoria Sports Complex.

The 2024 show at the Peoria Sports Complex, located at 16101 N. 83rd Ave., promises to be the most extensive yet. Visitors can expect a wide array of historic military vehicles, live demonstrations, and interactive experiences. Admission fees are set at $10 for adults, $5 for children aged 5 to 13 and veterans with ID, while active-duty military and children under 5 can attend for free.

Apart from the annual show, the AMVCC is active year-round, participating in a variety of events. From elementary school “touch a truck” parties to memorial services, county fairs, parades, patriotic rallies, and veterans’ events, these vehicles and their owners are a familiar sight. The club even provides vehicles for movies, TV commercials, birthday parties, and car shows, depending on the fun and enjoyment factor of the event.

The club is run by individual volunteers who maintain and operate their personally-owned military vehicles. While there’s never a guarantee that these vintage machines or their drivers will always be available, the spirit of the club is to make every effort to participate and share their passion.

For those interested in meeting the members or learning more about the club, monthly planning meetings are held on the first Thursday of every month. The meetings currently take place at the American Legion, Luke Greenway Post 1, located at 364 N. 7th Ave., in Phoenix.

As the club prepares for the upcoming show in January 2024, it stands as a beacon for military history enthusiasts and a vivid reminder of the vehicles that played a crucial role in shaping our world. The Arizona Military Vehicle Collector’s Club continues to keep history alive, one restored vehicle at a time.

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