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CHICAGO -- For nearly as long as there have been automobiles, there has been a need to wash them. In fact, the International Carwash Association (ICA), the world's largest organization for car wash professionals, is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2014.
Frank McCormick and J.W. Hinkle opened Automobile Laundry in Detroit in 1914, featuring the first production line car wash in the world. Previously, car cleaning was done by hand. Today, there are more than 150,000 car wash locations nationwide.
"This certainly is a special milestone for our industry," said ICA CEO Eric Wulf. "We're looking forward to sharing stories and celebrations throughout the year, particularly through social media and our magazine."
The ICA will honor the centennial anniversary in several ways:
- A Facebook page has been created to share pictures, videos, stories and comments.
- ICA's official quarterly magazine, CAR WASH Magazine, will include special features and historical photography in each of its editions this year.
- The organization's recently launched Century Club is designed to provide an exclusive opportunity for vendor members to show support for the industry as it looks toward the next 100 years.
The celebration will culminate with a party at the House of Blues in Chicago during The Car Wash Show, the world's largest car wash convention and trade show. The show is set to take place March 31-April 2 at Chicago's McCormick Place.