March 17, 2009
America On Wheels Shifts Into High-Gear for New Membership
Allentown, PA - Celebrating the culmination of a successful
first year that included the highly popular "Muscle Cars"
and "Legends of Speed" exhibits, the America On Wheels (AOW)
transportation museum is moving at full-speed into its second
year and its first official membership drive.
Executive Director Linda Merkel announced the drive Tuesday.
"Membership is a critical component of any non-profit institution.
It provides a steady income base that helps keeps the doors
open, it demonstrates a broad and diverse base of support
in the community and it allows us to tap a pool of expertise
that improves the programs and exhibits we provide to the
community," Merkel said.
"Our focus over the past year has been creating an institutional
icon for the City of Allentown, the Lehigh Valley and the
automotive transportation community. We are thrilled with
the success we have enjoyed over the past 12 months," she
added. "Now, based on that success, we can steer in other
directions and the first will be expanding our membership
As part of the drive, America On Wheels is offering discount
membership rates to its residential neighbors in Allentown's
"Weed and Seed" district to encourage more community involvement
in the institution and its programs. The offer, available
to residents in the 18101 and 18102 ZIP codes, includes
one year of unlimited admission through a $15 Associate
Membership (regularly $35) for individuals and a $20 Contributing
Membership (regularly $50) for two adults and three children
up to age 16.
These members will also receive a 10 percent discount in
the Park and Shop Gift Shop, free use of the AOW library,
invitations to special programs and events, a subscription
to the "Spoke & Word" newsletter, a discount birthday party
package and discounts on room rentals for special events.
"America On Wheels wants to be a contributing member of
its community and we truly welcome the community to be a
part of our institution," Merkel said.
Merkel also said that several member-based events will
be held over the next few weeks to celebrate the First Anniversary
and the new membership drive, including an "America On Wheels
Members Open House" from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Saturday,
The Open House will include a gallery talk on the "Legends
of Speed" exhibit by Alan Gross, Second Vice-President of
the AOW Board of Directors. Gross will conduct the interactive
discussion that will include details of each car in the
exhibit, the history of legendary Allentown mechanic Hiram
Hillegass and the construction of the Hillegass sprint cars,
and a conversation on the Mario Andretti tribute that opened
the "Legends of Speed" exhibit.
State Sen. Pat Browne, (R-16th) and other elected officials
will be part of the Open House festivities.
For more information on membership rates and benefits,
please go to: http://www.americaonwheels.org.
The elaborate galleries of the AOW feature the vehicles
that put our nation, literally, on the road to international
leadership in automotive transportation. Exhibits range
from the latest in personal transportation vehicles, such
as scooters and Segways, to the grand Mack Trucks that help
feed and supply a growing country.
The "Legends of Speed" exhibit, which concludes at the
end of March, features more than 30 short-track racers,
a replication of the famous Allentown garage of Hiram Hillegass
and a tribute to the Lehigh Valley's own Mario Andretti
with several of the actual cars that Andretti raced - including
his Indianapolis 500 racers.
AOW also offers hands-on playtime exhibits and learning
centers for the children and a souvenir shop for race fans
and anyone with an affinity for our automotive legacy.
Purchase your museum tickets by visiting the America On
Wheels Museum. For more information, call the museum staff
at 610-432-4200, e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
or go to www.americaonwheels.org. Ticket prices, which include
admission to the Community Program, are $7 for adults, $5
for senior citizens; $3.50 for children ages 6 to 16. Children
5 and under are free.
For More Information:
Linda Merkel - Executive Director
America On Wheels Museum
5 N. Front St. Allentown, PA