Langley Times

Cruise-In charities will share $70,000 in donations

With a crowd of up to 100,000 people, Langley
With a crowd of up to 100,000 people, Langley's annual Good Times Cruise In raises money for local charities every year. This year, local non profit groups will share $70,000.
— image credit: Langley Times file photo

A few lucky charities in Langley are starting off the new year with a huge financial boost — $70,000 to be exact.

That’s how much was raised by the Langley Good Times Cruise-In Society at their annual car show in September.

The total sum is to be split among the Cruise-In’s three official charities — Langley Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, Langley Community Support Group Society (formerly Langley Stroke Recovery), and Valley Therapeutic Equestrian Association.

Other local groups who helped at the event will also receive part of the donation, including Teen Challenge, Langley Boys and Girls Club, Douglas Park Community School, Kwantlen Polytechnic University Foundation, St John Ambulance, Vineyard Church, Aldergrove Ninjas Soccer, Aldergrove Cheetahs Soccer, Langley Lions , Langley Lodge, Langley Rotary and Langley Elks.

Although the amount raised is lower than in past years (the 2011 show raised $86,000), it is still a significant donation for the charities, said Cruise-In director Lori Watts.

“For most of our community groups it’s a large chunk of money for them and for a lot of them it is a big part of their budget for the year,” Watts said. “So for a lot of them for them to be able to do what they do, they really do rely on us a lot.”

Part of the struggle at the 2012 show was a decline in sponsorships, which vice-president Eric Taylor says he hopes to turn around for 2013.

“I wish it could have been more raised, but we did what we could, and we’ll try harder this year,” Taylor said.

“(The charities) were incredibly happy. They do great work and I can’t imagine how they can possibly raise enough money to do what they do without fundraisers like ours.”

Once a new Cruise-In board is elected at the end of January, the team will begin to formulate new strategies for the 2013 show.

Watts says one of her ultimate goals is to have the spectators make donations as well.

Currently only those who register a car in the show are required to pay. But with crowds of 100,000 or more showing up each year, just a $1 donation from each person could raise an extra $100,000.

“It’s a tough challenge unless we fence off the whole city – it’s pretty hard to do,” Watts said. “But that would be my dream to fence off the whole area and make people pay a buck to come in.

“We’re asking the guys who are actually going to all the trouble to bring their cars out, they’re paying the money, but nobody’s paying to see the vehicles. It’s almost like we’re penalizing the car guys. It would be nice to get the spectators to throw some money in.”

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