Blog
Photography By: 
Quadratec

by Matt Konkle
Quadratec Channel Editor


The early June sea of Jeeps that normally descend on the Cooper’s Lake Campground in Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania won’t be happening this year. No mud pits, World War Two reenactment camps, or Jeep Invasion parade either.

The Friends of the Bantam Jeep Association Monday announced this year’s 10th annual Bantam Jeep Heritage Festival has been canceled after learning Cooper’s Lake is closing for the remainder of 2020 due to COVID-19 repercussions.

“We have been optimistic all along that we would be able to celebrate our 10th anniversary either in June or October,” said FBJA president Todd Wagner in a statement. “We know that thousands of Jeep enthusiasts were looking forward to being at Bantam, and we and the owners of Cooper’s Lake Campground are truly disappointed that the present circumstances will not allow us to hold the Festival as we had hoped.”

The Bantam Jeep Heritage Festival is one of the nation’s largest Jeeps events and annually attracts more than 2,500 Jeeps and 30,000 people to the Cooper’s Lake Campground which is about an hour north of Pittsburgh.

It is normally held the second weekend of June, and the three-day experience involves over 150 Jeep industry vendors, historical exhibits, obstacle course playgrounds, mud pits and trail rides designed to embrace the vehicle's past and the lifestyle it now promotes.

Besides the actual event, Bantam also hosts a huge Jeep parade in nearby Butler, Pa., the original birthplace of Jeep. That parade earned a place with the Guinness World Records for largest Jeep parade in 2015.

Organizers said those who have already registered for the 2020 event will have their spot automatically roll over into the 2021 Bantam Jeep Heritage Festival. Additionally, anyone looking for a refund can request one on the event's site.

Cooper’s Lake Campground will follow the same procedure, organizers said, and assign existing reservations to campsites for 2021. Both the Festival and Cooper’s Lake will reach out to registered customers with further details and instructions to request refunds via email this week.

Despite this year's cancellation, organizers plan on keeping all 10th anniversary celebrations in place for next June’s event, and are also still selling raffle tickets for their 1981 Jeep Scrambler build. That raffle will take place in early October, organizers said.

Wagner also said the FBJA is looking to put something together for Jeep enthusiasts October 2-4.

“We are working on some plans that we hope will turn this frustrating news into a bit of excitement for our Bantam fans,” he said. “We need some time to get things finalized, and we will announce details in the coming weeks.”

Top Jeep Articles

Reference
What Are The Differences In Jeep Fender Flares
  • Matt Konkle
  • May 26, 2020
When it comes time for that fender flare upgrade, there is more to the story than just a factory replacement.
Blog
PA Jeeps Canceling Popular All Breeds Jeep Show For 2020
  • Matt Konkle
  • May 13, 2020
Difficult decision marks first cancellation in event history, but will return in July 2021.
Blog
Spring Wisely - Top Products You Need When The Jeep Top Comes Off
  • Matt Konkle
  • May 11, 2020
Don't let the change of seasons cruise by without giving your Jeep the makeover it deserves.
Blog
Report: Jeep Looking To Add Wrangler Trim Level To Desert Rated Category
  • Matt Konkle
  • May 11, 2020
Vehicle would follow the footsteps of its larger Gladiator younger brother as a performance type desert machine, but would also retain its legendary off-road ability.
Blog
National Nurses Day 2020
  • Matt Konkle
  • May 6, 2020
Since 1974, day celebrates and honors nurses across the country who care for others' health.
Reference
Heininger Propane Outdoor Fire Pit Perfect Alternative To Wood-Fueled Campfires
  • Scott Ammerman
  • May 5, 2020
Easy to set up fire pit will make that next campsite, or backyard, gathering safer and quicker to organize.
Blog
Campground Closure Forces 2020 Bantam Jeep Heritage Festival Cancellation
  • Matt Konkle
  • May 4, 2020
Organizers were hopeful this year's event would still take place, but Cooper's Lake closure ended those plans.
Blog
Jeep Group Honors Fallen Delaware State Police Officer
  • Matt Konkle
  • May 1, 2020
Caravan attracts nearly 150 Jeeps to mark third anniversary of trooper's death.
Reference
When Should You Upgrade Your Jeep's Exhaust Kit?
  • Matt Konkle
  • April 24, 2020
Aftermarket exhaust kits offer better, more durable materials, as well as power and performance gains that easily outclass the factory exhaust.