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Long-haul trucker convention and expo slated for Lake George this July

The event is being planned in conjunction with Citizens & Truckers United, a national organization of long-haul truckers of which Sutton is state director.

The state chapter has staged several convoys in the past in the region, primarily protests over high fuel costs and restrictive regulations that hamper the trucking industry, Sutton said.

In recent years, the group has held several convoys and protests in Albany. One convoy last June featured about 300 truckers traveling from Fort Ann to Albany protesting truck taxation and fuel prices.

Sutton said Prospect Center of Queensbury was chosen because of its financial need in this era of economic uncertainty and specifically the proposed state budget cuts to children with developmental issues.

"How can Gov. Paterson cut funding to children with disabilities? Our organization can not turn our back on this," he said. "Children with disabilities are often overlooked, and it's wrong."

Tina Kelly of Prospect Center said she was pleased about the enthusiasm the trucking group has shown in planning the fundraising event, and she was helping coordinate details on behalf of the center.

Sutton said that he's contacted the "Chrome Shop Mafia" folks of the hit television series "Trick My Truck" and he's negotiating their participation in the event, which is now envisioned to be held on one day, but may expand into a full weekend.

Sutton said other attractions may include one of the original Batmobiles leading the convoy into Lake George.

The convoy beginning the event is expected to start at Scotty's truck stop off I-87 Northway Exit 16, and travel up the highway into Lake George. The event may be so popular, however, that a second convoy may be staged from the Fort Ann Truck Stop into into Lake George, Sutton said.

"Through events like this, we hope to give everyday citizens a new impression of truckers," he said. "We're just hard-working people who have a passion for their work and their vehicles."

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