Christmas in July car show benefits Fayette kids

A successful car show benefiting Fayette Toys for Tots was held in the Fayetteville Summit Point shopping center July 5.

The event was hosted by Restorod and Collision Auto Body Shop and all toy donation proceeds were donated to Fayette Toys for Tots, which focuses on providing toys to local families in need during the Christmas holiday season.

The car show raised 115 toys from the numerous car show participants. The event coordinators, Andy Coker and Kevin Earnest of Restorod stated that 230 car entries participated in the event, competing in categories such as the Top Ten and Best of Show.

“This is the largest car show to date since the event’s inception in 2012. We’ve seen the size of this event pretty much double in three short years,” stated Andy Coker, the principal event coordinator.

The idea for the charity Toys for Tots Christmas in July car show grew out the summer biweekly classic car “Cruise-ins” that typically meet at the Partner’s Pizza parking lot at the Summit Point Shopping Center.

Three years ago, Andy Coker and his Restorod staff of six volunteers decided to capitalize on the great turnout of the summer “cruise-ins’ and grow it into a charity event that benefits local children in need. They chose Toys for Tots because they wanted to help local children in need and Toys for Tots does exactly that.

In 2013, the national Toys for Tots foundation collected 3,628,251 toys working through 289 Marine Corps League Detachments. Those toys were distributed to 1,098,020 children nationwide.

At the local level, the Fayette and Coweta Marine Corps Leagues’ Sgt. Clyde Thomason Medal of Honor Detachment collected 16,442 toys by partnering with over 80 local establishments that serve as collection points and/or sponsor special toy fundraising events such as the Christmas in July Car Show.

Fayette Toys for Tots also partnered with 29 charitable and religious organizations that assisted in distributing all the collected toys to almost 5,000 children of Fayette and Coweta counties. The toy donations amounted to a financial impact of $115,070 in toy distributions and over 1,500 volunteer service hours for our detachment and community service volunteers.

Fayette Toys for Tots Coordinator, LtCol (Ret.) James Ruvalaba stated, “We are extremely thankful for the past and continued support from our local churches, businesses, service organizations, schools, and our valued Detachment members that enable us to serve our children in need. This would not be possible without their support because we function on 100 percent volunteers since we have no paid staff members.”

Businesses that would like to serve as new collection sites or sponsor toy drive events for this upcoming 2014 Christmas holiday season should contact James Ruvalcaba at Fayettetoysfortots@hotmail.com.

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