Tag Archives: Bill Walsh Toyota

History of Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is one of America’s favorite holidays to celebrate. But do you really know the history of the first Thanksgiving?

Many people know that the first Thanksgiving involved Pilgrims and Native Americans. As it turns out, there is an elaborate story that involves the unity of the two groups.

Thanksgiving - Bill Walsh Toyota - Ottawa, IL

In September 1620, the Mayflower left Plymouth, England, and landed in Massachusetts, where the Pilgrims onboard established a village that they called Plymouth.

Unfortunately, the New England winter was rough on the Pilgrims, especially for those who stayed on the ship. Only about half of the Pilgrims survived through March, by which time the survivors had moved ashore.

During the month of March, an Abenaki Indian paid the settlers a visit, greeting them in English. He returned just a few days later with Squanto, a member of the Pawtuxet tribe who had escaped slavery and found his way back to his tribe.

Despite Squanto’s horrible experience with Englishmen, he helped the Pilgrims by teaching them how to cultivate corn, extract sap, and catch fish. Not only did Squanto teach them how to sustain life in their new land, he also helped them make an alliance with the Wampanoag, a local tribe.

By the time November of 1621 came, the Pilgrims had their first corn harvest (thanks to Squanto). The Pilgrims celebrated the harvest alongside their Native American allies. This is what is known as the “First Thanksgiving.”

We at Bill Walsh Toyota wish you and your loved ones a very Happy Thanksgiving.

Things to Do: Fall Events in Ottawa, IL

Looking for fall events in Ottawa, Illinois? There’s tons to do in the area, from family fun nights to educational programs. Simply hop in your new Toyota Avalon or Camry, and you can start exploring the area today. There’s truly something for everyone in Ottawa this fall.

fall events in Ottawa - Bill Walsh Toyota - Ottawa, IL

According to Pick Us Ottawa, one of the most popular events in the fall is the Old Town Farmers Market. Farmers markets are a great way to get fresh produce and crafts while also supporting local farmers and entrepreneurs. Plus, you can often find great deals. The Ottawa Old Town Farmers Market is held in Washington Square Park from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and the next one is on Sept. 16.

The “parkrun” is also coming up, the world’s largest organized running activity. There’s a free timed 5K, and it’s held at Heritage Harbor at 9 a.m. on Sept. 16. In fact, this event is held every Saturday, and it has run, walk, and jog options for participants. You can register online for the event at www.parkrun.us.

Two fun events for families include family board games and the Loop Group, both of which are at the Reddick Public Library. The family board games event will be held on Sept. 16 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., while the Loop Group—a knit and crochet group—will be held from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.

Finally, learn Mandarin Chinese at the Reddick Public Library on Sept. 16. This free group is open to teens and adults who would like to learn Mandarin, one of the most popular dialects of Chinese.

These are just some of the many fun things to do in Ottawa that we at Bill Walsh Toyota suggest. Many of these events happen on a weekly basis, so if you can’t go this week, you can still make it the next time.

Here Are the Best Drive-ins in Illinois

 

The last days of summer are quickly approaching — how does your summer bucket list look? Did you check off most of those weekend getaways, trips to the farmer’s market, golden tans, and so on? Was an evening spent at an old-fashioned drive-in on your list? If it wasn’t, you might want to consider adding it. Or, if it was, and you still haven’t checked it off, we have a list to help you out!

Drive-Ins in Illinois - Bill Walsh Toyota - Ottawa, IL

Here are the best drive-ins in Illinois (be sure to make it to one before the summer’s over!):

  1. Cascade Drive-In

Located in West Chicago, this old-time drive-in offers double features for just $10 per adult ($5 per child 5-11, free for kids under 5). Cascade Drive-In even has a ‘50s-era cafeteria, but feel free to bring in your own meals and snacks.

 

  1. McHenry Outdoor Theater

Here’s a bit of nostalgia for you: at McHenry Outdoor Theater, you need to call for showtimes! No more simply relying on Google! This drive-in has been a staple of the McHenry, Illinois, community for decades, and one trip there for a flick will tell you why. Tickets are $12 for adults and $6 for kids 11 and under.

 

  1. Harvest Moon Twin Drive In Movie Theatre

There is no other way to describe the Harvest Moon Twin Drive In Movie Theatre, except as an absolute classic delight. Located in Gibson, Illinois, you won’t want to miss a trip to Harvest Moon, or their well-stocked snack bar that offers a variety of goodies from pizza to pickles.

 

If you happen to be in the market for the perfect car to take to one of these drive-ins in Illinois, stop by Bill Walsh Toyota today and check out our huge selection of cars, trucks, and SUVs!

New 2018 Yaris Hatchback Comes with Upgraded Features

Toyota recently announced some final details about the new 2018 Yaris hatchback, including sporty features, added convenience, and upgraded technologies. The Yaris is the perfect car for city and highway, offering impressive fuel economy, a comfortable drive, as well as great handling and safety. Read on to learn about some of the latest features on this new hatchback.

According to Toyota, the new Yaris comes with a Toyota Safety Sense-C™ system, including three driver assist technologies: Pre-Collision, Lane Departure Alert, and Automatic High Beams. This trio of safety systems is designed to keep you better protected in dangerous situations, alerting you to danger and watching your blind spots.

“The fuel-efficient Yaris represents a great value for buyers on a budget as it is the Toyota brand’s least expensive model, yet it is equipped with many standard safety and convenience features.  Among the many standard carryover safety features is Toyota Safety Sense- C™ (TSS-C), a trio of driver assist technologies that help drivers get from point “A” to point “B” with safety assurance,” reads the Toyota press release.

The new Yaris will come in three-door and five-door styles, as well as L, LE, and SE trims. You’ll find a contoured exterior, horizontal taillamps, a new front facia, and more. Intelligent features include LCD displays, an ECO-Driving indicator, and the Entune™ Audio system. The Entune™ system has a touchscreen display, smartphone connectivity, and more. Stop by Bill Walsh Toyota to test drive the latest Yaris today.Bill Walsh Toyota to test drive the latest Yaris today.

45 Toyota Cars at NAIAS 2017, Including C-HR and New Camry

2018 Toyota Camry Announced At NAIAS 2-17

The North American International Auto Show ( NAIAS 2017 ) is still going on for a few more days, and by the end Toyota will have shown 45 vehicles. The big story is the new generation of the Camry, Toyota’s flagship sedan, as well as the C-HR crossover coupe that has been making its way around US auto shows in the last year before finally stopping in Detroit.

The 2018 Camry

The eighth-generation Camry, which will go on sale with 2018 models, was built on the TNGA, or “Toyota New Global Architecture,” which was also used in the new Toyota Innova Crysta and the Fortuner, and utilizes sharp, bold styling and defined lines for sporty, aggressive looks.

The Camry’s new sloping roof and sleek profile give a more luxurious impression than previous generations, which is matched by its superior driving dynamics, a redesigned cabin with seamlessly integrated touchscreen, and a unique center console.

The Camry Hybrid will also get a redesign, with some minor differences from the gasoline Camry, including a backlit blue Toyota symbol and a different grille. It will also include the next-generation Toyota Hybrid System.

 The 2018 C-HR

The C-HR is set to go on sale in 2018 as well. Originally meant to be part of the Scion lineup, the C-HR takes obvious design cues from the funky, youth-oriented Scion styles. Its deep curves and sharp lines perfectly combine the TNGA design philosophy with the crossover coupe style, giving Toyota a great contender for the subcompact SUV market.

Toyota Partners With Startup to Improve Autonomous Vehicle Systems

The automobile market has stretched far beyond just building and engineering reliable, long-lasting cars, with more automakers than ever dipping their toes into the world of technology and investing in futuristic features like autonomous vehicle systems. Toyota is one of these companies, having recently announced a partnership between the Toyota Research Institute and Allianz Ventures. The collaboration will give rise to Nauto, a data-collection startup that will use human driver data to improve autonomous driving.

Toyota isn’t the only one cashing in on Nauto. BMW i Ventures and another unnamed auto manufacturer also have stakes in the startup, as they seek to use the system’s technology for the same purpose. The anonymous data collection is done using a small box containing a camera and computer that attaches to a vehicle’s windshield. The camera will then monitor the driver’s habits, learn how to navigate complicated roads, and collect traffic data.

Eventually Nauto would like to program its technology into all vehicles in order to collect even more data for future autonomous vehicle systems, but for the moment, Toyota, BMW, and another manufacturer are the only ones involved in the startup. BMW and Toyota have worked together in the past and are currently also said to be developing a vehicle together, so they’re no strangers to collaborating.

Toyota Supra Spy Pictures Released

Finally, Toyota Supra spy pictures have surfaced! The Supra, which Toyota is producing in conjunction with BMW, looks just like the Supra that went out of production in the early 2000s, and fans are thrilled. The iconic Supra sports car seems to have taken some inspiration from the FT-1 concept Toyota introduced at the Detroit Auto Show.

First announced in 2012, the Toyota-BMW partnership to produce a sports car hasn’t technically been named, but enthusiasts have long speculated that the car will be a remake of the Supra. Hints from the engineers working on the project have furthered rumors, and with these new photos, it’s all but confirmed.

BMW and Toyota will eventually produce a Z5 released under the BMW name as well as what is speculated to be a new Toyota Supra. This isn’t the first time two automakers have come together to produce low-volume, high-price models they would struggle to fund individually—Mazda and Fiat partnered to produce the Mazda MX-5 Miata and the Fiat 124 Spider.

In other Supra-related news, MotorTrend released a recent article that suggested the Supra may eventually include a hybrid model. The Toyota Europe CEO said he does not “have any doubt whatsoever that in the long-term future there will be a real Toyota sports model using electrification,” but nothing has been confirmed.

Check Out Toyota’s Taxi of the Future

Here in the United States, when you imagine a taxi, you probably think about a yellow four-door sedan. In Japan, the image is pretty similar; however, the taxis there will be getting a significant update with what Toyota is calling the “taxi of the future.”

The new taxis seem to be a hybrid between a sedan and a minivan. They will come with a high roof, low floor, and sliding doors. With these features, there will be enough room for a wheelchair, making the new design ideal for elderly passengers and families with small children.

Toyota hopes to put its new taxi on the road in Japan sometime next year with the help of the Japan Federation of Hire-Taxi Associations. Toyota cars have been used as taxis since 1936 when the first model AA sedans rolled off the factory floor.

With this new taxi, Toyota hopes to improve the overall taxi experience and industry. It said it hopes to work with taxi drivers to “collaborate on experimental business approaches that make use of automated-driving technology.”

Toyota says that with some automated technology in a taxi, it would open up more opportunities for people who currently cannot be taxi drivers, such as those with disabilities or younger inexperienced drivers

Toyota Ad Brings the World Together at 2016 Rio Olympics

During the 2016 Rio Olympics you may have noticed a commercial from Toyota that showed a medal ceremony and everyone joining hands. While you might think, “This looks like the Olympics,” only official Olympic sponsors can use the Olympic insignia and name. Toyota will get this honor next year, so in the meantime, we get a glimpse into Toyota’s “friendship tournament.”

This ad, called “Stand Together” not only celebrates the Olympic spirit, but is also a way to raise money for those in need. Toyota is encouraging people to share their own videos of people holding hands with the hashtag #LetsJoinHands. For every video, Toyota will then donate $20 to United Way, up to $250,000. The user-generated content may also be mixed together to create a new videos.

Jack Hollis, group VP-marketing for Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., said, “We believe, as our founder did, in the ‘power of togetherness’ and athletics is an amazing example of the power of teamwork. While we do not compete at the highest levels of sport on the playing field, we celebrate the spirit of collaboration every day, whether it is within the walls of Toyota, or in our interaction with our guests.”

Toyota’s official Olympic sponsorship will begin in January and will run through the end of 2024. This will include the 2018 Winter Oympics in Pyeonchange, South Korea; the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo; the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing; and the 2024 Summer Olympics.

Jay Leno Test Drives the Toyota i-Road EV

Everybody knows Jay Leno as the former host of The Tonight Show. However, fewer people know that Leno is also a huge automotive enthusiast. He takes any chance he can get to drive a new vehicle. One of the latest models he test drove was a unique experience even for him. Jay Leno had the chance to test drive the Toyota i-Road EV.

The Toyota i-Road EV is unlike any other vehicle currently in the industry. With space for one driver, you won’t find a lot of room for cargo. However, its small size and unique 3-wheel configuration allows it to maneuver through the tightest of obstacles.

Additionally, since it is an EV vehicle, the i-Road EV can travel about 31 miles on a single charge, allowing you to take the small vehicle to relatively distant destinations.

When Leno got behind the wheel of the Toyota i-Road EV, he had some articulate descriptions of the vehicle. “Well it’s a very odd sensation,” he said. “It feels like I’m driving a car, but it’s almost like I’m on skis.”

Combining his automotive experience with the i-Road capabilities, Leno was able to easily conquer an obstacle course set up for him.

Don’t miss your chance to experience the best vehicles that the automotive world has to offer. Be like Leno and test drive a Toyota today!