Make us your home page

Volkswagens to descend on Dade City for annual Florida Bug Jam

The 28th annual Florida Bug Jam takes place Nov. 12 and 13 at the Pasco County Fairgrounds in Dade City.

Times (2009)

The 28th annual Florida Bug Jam takes place Nov. 12 and 13 at the Pasco County Fairgrounds in Dade City.

DADE CITY — This weekend, the 28th annual, Marvel comic-themed, Florida Bug Jam will include a parade and a concert. But the highlight is what else visitors will see.

"Volkswagens everywhere," said Bug Jam promoter Randy Yoho.

In fact, Yoho said, the Bug Jam is one of the largest Volkswagen car shows in the country — and it keeps growing.

Last year about 10,000 lovers of the German automaker showed up from as far away as Japan and Germany.

"It was a record year," Yoho said.

Why so popular?

"It's a good time," Yoho said. "A lot of nice people, and they all have Volkswagen in common. They're car enthusiasts."

And, in his third year promoting the event, Yoho has become one,. He bought a white 1970 Volkswagen Bus and named it "Rover."

This year's festival is the third in a row that will be two days instead of one. Organizers turned it into a two-day event so "somebody's who driving from Alabama or Georgia has a little more to do," Yoho said.

Saturday's schedule includes a poker run and Bugs on the Track — an opportunity to watch modified Volkswagens navigate an off-road motocross track.

"A lot of bajas and rails," Yoho said. "Some people take their (Volkswagen) vans out there and drive them around the course. These things do very well off-road. It's surprising how versatile they are."

A police-escorted Volkswagen parade from the Pasco County Fairgrounds to downtown Dade City, where the Bug Jam will hold its "Pre-Jam Party," will take place Saturday. Live music will follow at the fairgrounds with the Caribbean Chillers, a Jimmy Buffet tribute band, headlining.

The car show and swap meet are on Sunday.

"It's all Volkswagens," Yoho said. "We don't let Fords or Chevys in."

Yoho expects at least 700 Volkswagens to be on display during the show.

During the show, visitors will be able to browse or buy at the concurrent swap meet, which will feature more than 100 used parts vendors and 20 new parts vendors.

"Keeping these older Volkswagens running is a labor of love," Yoho said.

And the Florida Bug Jam keeps people coming to Dade City.

"It's bringing people in who have never seen Dade City, or Pasco County, at all," Yoho said. "I hope we can beat our record, or at least get close to it this year."

>>if you go

Florida Bug Jam

The 28th annual Florida Bug Jam is from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Nov. 12 and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 13 at the Pasco County Fairgrounds, 36722 State Road 52, Dade City. Cost is $5 to park and $10 for admission; free for children under 10 who bring a canned food item for the food drive. For information, call (352) 588-4697, or visit

Volkswagens to descend on Dade City for annual Florida Bug Jam 11/08/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 9, 2016 3:48pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. 20 local museums are offering free admission or deals Saturday for Free Museum Day

    Visual Arts

    For all the community's support of the arts in the bay area, it's nice to be rewarded with free admission once in a while. And that's exactly what many area museums are offering on Saturday.

    The Museum of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg is among the museums participating in the Smithsonian's Museum Day Live, offering free admission. (LANCE ROTHSTEIN   |  Special to the Times)
  2. OMD announces dates for extensive North American tour


    OMD fans have been waiting for this for a long time: Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark has just announced a huge tour of North America set to begin in spring 2018. Three Florida stops are included in their road trip. 

  3. Saturday festival will celebrate the sweet potato


    NEW PORT RICHEY — It's harvest time for the sweet potato.

    MICHELE MILLER |  TIMESMore than 300 pounds of sweet potatoes have been harvested from local organic gardens for the inaugural Sweet Potato Round-Up and Fall Farming Festival set for this weekend in New Port  Richey. Those who go will be able to purchase sweet potatoes and get some hints on what to grow during the hot summer months, said Sylvia Spencer, shown here, manager if the Habitat garden as well as the Grand Garden Community Plot on Grand Boulevard.
  4. We Tried That: Can you throw a cocktail party for less than $25?


    Power drills scream. Rain drops fleck my skin, small pinpricks of cold. I hurry my 9-month-old puppy down the street as my neighbors screw plywood to their windows, preparing for the arrival of Hurricane Irma.

    Today is a good day for a party.

    This Old Fashioned, made with Angostura orange bitters, is garnished with a maraschino cherry and a clementine twist.