On Saturday, Oct. 7, Truly Nolen Pest Control hosted its first-ever Community Car Show. More than 800 people attended this free event, which featured 54 antique cars from late founder Truly David Nolen’s collection. It took place in the parking lot of the Truly Nolen Leadership Center in Tucson, Ariz. The Leadership Center has served as a training center for Truly Nolen employees in the western United States since February 2016; it’s also been the company’s headquarters since February 2017.
Among the cars featured was Nolen’s personal favorite, a 1957 Chevrolet Bel-Air, which was the car he drove to and from work and was shipped in from Naples, Fla. for this special day. Other antiques on display were a 1918 Ford Model T Roadster, a 1922 Ford Model T Speedster, a 1930 Ford Model A, a 1940 Oldsmobile four-door sedan, a 1960 Nash Metro, and a 1974 Volkswagen Bug. Each vehicle had signage that included the history and statistics of each car in the collection. In addition, people had the opportunity to sit in the antique cars and take photographs if they so chose.
Several local non-profits were on-hand with displays about their organizations next to an antique they had “paired” with them for the day. Non-profits included the Shyann Kindess Project, Tucson Police Foundation, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tucson, TRAK, Ben’s Bells, American Heart Association, Habitat for Humanity and Southern Arizona Women’s Foundation. The event also featured food trucks and a petting zoo.
Michelle Nolen Senner, one of Nolen’s eight children, began discussing a car show with her father in late March now that the company had the space to host so many of his antique cars in one place, which would not have been possible at company’s previous Speedway Boulevard headquarters. Nolen told his daughter he liked the idea because people always want to sit in his cars and have their pictures taken. Although this turned out to be the last conversation Senner had with her father, who passed away April 18 at age 89, it served as the catalyst to an event that exceeded the company’s modest goal of 500 attendees.
The company is now in the process of determining which of the cars was voted as Best In Show, and then discussing the feasibility of making this car show an annual event for Tucson.