~The information and pictures were sent to us by Jose Guillermo Jaramillo.
Willys Jeeps were first introduced in Colombia in 1946 following WWII, the US Army had surplus Jeeps and parts so they began distributing them to developing countries. The term Yipao came from the mispronouncing of the word Jeep. Colombia has a largely mountainous topography and prior to the introduction of the Jeep the main transportation was mules. The Jeeps versatile nature allowed the people to use it for many uses such as transporting agricultural produce, people, and also household items. In areas where there was no electricity the PTO or winch was able to provide power for multiple agricultural purposes. The PTO’s powered water pumps, power plants, and distributors of coffee which was indispensable in the daily work of the farm. In short the Jeep became a cultural icon for Colombia.
The Yipao parade is celebrated during June both in Armenia and Calarcá, Quindío. The first edition of the parade was organized by Mrs Joan Jaramillo, headmistress of protocol of the Quindio Governor’s office in 1988. The event has several categories separated according to the products carried in the vehicles:
- Agricultural products
- Institutional advertisement
The Willys Jeeps are driven by the main streets of the city and the Jeeps with the largest amount of objects carried and the most harmonious arrangements earn prizes.
In February 2006, a Guinness World Records was established the for the “Longest Jeep Parade” in Calarca, with a caravan of over 370 Jeep Willys vehicles.
Kaiser Willys Jeep Blog Story – Jose Guillermo Jaramillo
If you would like to share your Willys Jeep Story please send us a line. We ‘d love to meet your Jeep.
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