By Jon Dinan
MONTICELLO The Town of Wallkill Boys & Girls Club serving the Town of Wallkill, Fallsburg, Liberty, Mamakating, Monticello, and Pine Bush, hosted a “fund racer” at the exclusive Monticello Motor Club last Friday, July 20.
The event was called a “fund racer” because driving high powered sports cars was the attraction that helped the non-profit group raise $44,000.
The proceeds went toward provifing scholarships children of low-income families in Sullivan and Orange Counties.
Boys and Girls Club Executive Director, Alexis Eggleton of Roscoe coordinated the event with the help of several volunteers including Jessica Gardener of Media Solstice, Lisa Kelley of Focus Media, Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther’s Chief of Staff Allison Horan and a seven-person organizing committe comprised of: Tom Beck, Michael Blustein, Howard Braunstein, Jonathan Rouis, Ira Steingart; and committee co-chairs Chris Masters and R.J. Smith.
Attendees paid either $500 or $750 and were given the opportunity to ride two laps as a passenger or even drive two laps with an instructor.
Eggleton started the day by thanking the event sponsors, M&M Auto Group, Toshiba, and Greenwalt Law Offices. She then exlplained the mission of the Boy’s and Girl’s Club and the fundraiser before displaying a brief video that featured images of children and adults giving back to their communities together accompanied by a young man from Monticello singing Bill Withers classic, “Lean on Me.”
Moments later, a driving instructor appeared on the scene and gave one more brief on the driving curriculum. By 2 p.m. attendees were off to the races.
Roaring engines echoed through the hills as the 550 horsepower sedans ripped through the four-mile track.
After the last cars finished their laps close to two hours later, there was a two-hourreception.
During this time the Monticello Motor Club owner, Ari Straus addrressed the group.
“Our members consider MMC and Sullivan County their 2nd home and care deeply about organizations like the Boys & Girls Club that have a positive impact in our community,” Straus said. “One of our members joined us for the fundraising event and was so impressed with the organization, its mission, and its leadership that he wrote a $25,000 check on the spot. We are all incredibly grateful and humbled by his generosity on behalf of MMC.”
"This event achieved the goals that Alexis and the committee set forth, which were to create awareness about the needs of the Clubs, cultivate existing relationships within the community, and ultimately raise funds for the kids that the Boys & Girls Clubs serve." Chris Masters said.
“I cried.” Eggleton admitted after the event’s conclusion.
They were certainly tears of joy.