The first Cars Under the Stars Car Show brought together families and car enthusiasts on Saturday night to raise funds for the WiSH Education Foundation.
The sold-out event filled the rooftop of a multi-storey car park opposite Macy’s in Westfield Valencia Town Center.
Richard Cohn, who co-chairs the event with Amanda Benson Tilci, said he expects to exceed the funding target of $ 20,000 based on his evening attendance.
“It’s very exciting to be able to hit such a number for something we’ve never done before,” Korn said. “And all the money goes directly to the students.”
“100 percent is to support a foundation that goes directly to middle and high schools in the Heart School District of Santa Clarita,” he said.
Self-proclaimed “Carnut,” Korn said the WiSH Education Foundation wanted Santa Clarita Valley’s own fundraiser.
“There are many wine and dinner events and other activities in the community, and we are also involved,” Korn said. “But we wanted something new and unique, something that would take the family outdoors, something that would promote a local business … maybe it didn’t get much attention during last year’s pandemic. Hmm.”
Marcell Gordon, owner of Glowhouse Gaming, has set up a vendor booth at the car show with two TVs and game consoles, as well as information about his business’s after-school homework and tutoring programs.
“We just want to play our part and give back,” said Gordon, the parent of two students at Saugus High School. “We want to show them what the gratitude effort really means.”
Bruce Bolst of Santa Clarita represented the Barbank Road Kings, who donated 15 cars to the evening event.
“I don’t think we can ask for any more reasons,” said Borst, the parent of three children who attended school in the Hart district, about the WiSH Education Foundation.
Standing by Rick Strife, a 1971 Chevrolet El Camino in Santa Clarita, he and his family said he and his family were there to support the community.
“It’s good to go out and hang out,” he said of the opportunity. “It’s a good family atmosphere.”
Nearby, parents Meg Stradley and her husband chased their son, raced from car to car, and praised each like a toy car just unpacked.
“Our 5-year-old kid loves cars. He loves Hot Wheels and this is the actual version,” she said. “As locals, we love to support local events. We love to see people get together and celebrate important purposes.”
John Peterson, Mary Lee, and their school-aged children watched a martial arts demonstration before roaming over 100 cars from hot rods to muscle cars.
“It’s good to go out,” Lee said with a laugh. She said that some cars made me feel old. Peterson agreed.
“Cars in the 90’s are now classic and it makes us feel old,” he said with a smile.
In the evening, food and drinks from local businesses and live music were also shown. The event was moderated by local resident George Gray (announcer of The Price Is Right). George Gray helped excite the crowd at the WiSH Education Foundation.
“Last year, during the pandemic, when no one had money, they raised $ 80,000 for students,” he said to the audience’s applause.
Amy Daniels, Executive Director of the Foundation, ran a ticket desk for some of the evenings. She said the night was “absolutely special” and she hopes to double the scale of next year’s event.
“100% of our dollars stay in the Hart district and go to support student programs that aren’t covered by taxes alone,” she said.
That’s why events like Cars Under the Stars are so important, Daniels said, and the Foundation plans to host an SCV music festival on September 25 to continue raising funds.
Tickets for the SCV Music Festival are sold online at wishucationfoundation.org/our-events.
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