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Twin City Tent & Awning Co. was founded
in 1929 by B.J. Butler.
Mr. Butler started in a small 800 square
foot shop on South First Street in Champaign, Illinois, manufacturing
awnings and later renting tents in the Champaign-Urbana area.
In 1959, his grandson, Wayne Yonce, started
with the company during school breaks.
And in 1966, Yonce became General Manager
of the company. When Mr. Butler passed away in 1967, Twin
City Tent & Awning was left to his partner and wife Florence
Butler, with Mr. Yonce running the day-to-day operations.
During this time Twin City Tent & Awning
joined the Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky Canvas Products
Association (IIK) now called the Mid America 8 Canvas Products
Association. Yonce was elected to the Board of Directors of
the Association in 1970.
Twin City Tent and Awning Co. became a member
of the Canvas Products Association International (later called
the Industrial Fabrics Association International) in 1970.
1971, Mrs. Butler and her grandson Wayne moved Twin City Tent
& Awning to a new 5,000 square foot building on University
Avenue. The move was necessitated by ever expanding product
line and limited work space at the First Street location.
Twin City Tent & Awning was now producing boat covers,
roll tarps for grain trucks and trailers, and the awning portion
of the business had expanded to clients throughout Central
Illinois. In 1975 an additional 1,800 square feet were added
to the University Avenue location to handle the growing business.
Tent Rental Added
and his wife, Wanda, started Champiagn County Tent & Awning
Co. in 1975 to handle the tent rental portion of business
for Twin City Tent & Awning. Twin City continued to serve
as the retail portion of the business.
Wayne was elected to a two-year term as
President of the IIK in 1976. After his term he spent two
more years on the board as Immediate Past President finishing
nine years of service on the board.
New Plant Built
Butler retired in 1979 selling Twin City Tent & Awning
to Wayne & Wanda, who became President and Vice President,
respectively. Two years later, both companies moved again
to their newly build 24,500 square foot plant on Anthony Drive
in Urbana. The company began using the initials of Twin City
Tent & Awning (TCT&A Industries) to build on the fact
that the company produced more than tents and awnings. Again
in 1985 the business was expanded by an additional 7,200 square
feet to handle growth.
Wayne was elected in 1986 to the Board of
Directors of the Industrial Fabrics Association International
as a Regional Director for Central United States.
Back-Lit Awnings Introduced
1986, TCT&A became the first U.S. awning company to use
a newly developed process called "Heat Transfer"
for back lit awnings. This process involves using a paint
on paper and applying it to a white vinyl to create clean,
crisp graphics for awning blanks and flexible sign faces.
TCT&A now provides this service to other awning and sign
companies around the country.
In 1989, Kevin Yonce, eldest son of Wayne
and Wanda, joined the company full time and in 1995 was named
Chief Executive Officer.
By 1996, Kevin negotiated the acquisition
of Campus Tent Co. and incorporated the inventory and customer
base into what is now Champaign County Tent.
In 1996, Byron Yonce, younger son, joined
Twin City Tent & Awning and became production supervisor
and was named President in 1999. Byron & Kevin now run
Named to Industry's Top 10
this time, TCT&A Industries is recognized as one of leading
U.S. companies in the industrial fabrics industry. The facility
is the third largest industrial fabric end products manufacturer
in the Midwest. TCT&A has won more than 60 regional, national
and international awards for design and craftsmanship.
TCT&A is a member of the Mid America
8 Canvas Products Association, the Industrial Fabrics Association
International (IFAI), the awning Division of IFAI, the Tent
Rental Division of IFAI, the Truck Cover and Tarp Association
and the Banner and Flag Association.