Chevy Road Trip Showcases North Texas-made, American Brands
By Coco Salazar
Getting into the summer vibe, Infόrmate DFW took a road trip in a decked-out Chevy Suburban for insight into American brands that contribute to North Texans’ livelihoods.
To make our two-day trip fun, comfortable and safe, sponsor Chevrolet equipped us with a 2019 Suburban Premier, completewith leather-trimmed seating and the latest Wi-Fi, convenience and safety-feature technology.
After our first stop at Texas-born Buc-ee’s in Denton to grabsome of its fresh beef jerky for the road, the crew headed to Nocona to tour the Nokona Baseball Glove Factory. We got to see the detailed process of turning cowhide into dyed, individually cut, stamped, stitched, laced and embroidered leather gloves. The brand has graced the hands of top players such as Texan legend and Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan, whose first glove was a Nokona.
Unlike other brands that offshore to lower the cost of production, Nokona is the only place where baseball gloves are made in America. Established in 1934, Nokona employs about35 people and produces about 200 gloves daily.
Day One ended with a mouthwatering barbecue dinner at Southfork Ranch, better known as the Ewing family’s home in the world-famous TV series “Dallas.” Surrounded by the famous white mansion, the pool and barns, Chevy brought in a longhorn to complete an outdoor scene that’s true to Texas.
The next morning, we toured the Stetson and Resistol HatCo factory in Garland. From sizing and shaping to stitching andsteaming to achieve the perfect form, the crew witnessed the detailed processes of making straw and felt versions of theiconic cowboy and dress hats.
Operating since 1938, the factory counts on approximately 180 employees – 90 percent are Hispanic – to produce about 3,000 hats each day. The factory is the largest manufacturer of headwear in the world, as part of HatCo Inc.
After a hearty lunch at Corpus Christi-originated Whataburger, we headed to our last stop: General Motors Arlington Assembly Plant. The media team invited by Chevy took advantage of the unique opportunity to pose with a classic before getting a glimpse of employees adding finishing touches to several Suburbans in the assembly line.
Building vehicles since 1954, the plant is the only GM facility in the world to produce and export all GM full-size sport utility vehicles – Chevrolet Suburban and Tahoe, Cadillac Escalade and GMC Yukon and Yukon XL. Producing one vehicle almost every minute, the plant builds about 75 percent of all full-size SUVs in the country and says it pays about $1 million in wages every day.
The Chevy road trip came just in time to kick off summer and help us remember – amidst the intense heat waves – to appreciate the many treasures of North Texas.