photo courtesy Steve Maguire
Cool cars needed for cancer fundraiser
Greg Williams, Calgary Herald
Published: Friday, March 23, 2007
Steve Maguire is looking for some cool cars.
The 45-year old Calgarian wants 2,500 of them, in fact.
And if he can assemble them all on Aug. 26 at McMahon Stadium, his Cool Cars Cruising For Cancer campaign might just be the largest single-day auto event of its kind in the world.
“There are two- and three-day events with thousands of cars, such as Corvettes at Carlisle (in Pennsylvania) and the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance (in California), but they’re not fundraisers,” Maguire says. He’s hoping to raise $1 million for cancer research.
In 2002, Maguire’s sister, who lives in the U.K., was diagnosed with breast cancer. Frustrated by not being able to do much to help, Maguire and a group of his Calgary Corvettes Unlimited club friends started talking about putting on a car cruise for cancer.
“We thought we’d just get a bunch of Corvette people together and do a short cruise and see if we couldn’t raise a couple thousand bucks. It seemed like a good idea at the time,” Maguire says. “But it’s taken on a life of its own.”
The initial concept grew to include all makes and models of vehicles, from tuner cars to pioneer autos.
“We expect tuned Acuras, Ford Model Ts and As, lowrider trucks, military vehicles, Mustangs — just about everything,” Maguire says.
A website, coolcarscruising4cancer.ca, and several thousand flyers distributed at Alberta car shows and through car clubs have helped drum up interest in the event. But Maguire says a couple of people in the province have had a hand in spreading the word.
“Mike Nikolai, a gentleman I’ve never met before, has really helped expose the event in Edmonton,” Maguire says.
Expose it he has. From Edmonton alone, there are currently 26 car clubs and organizations planning on participating.
That makes the 12 Calgary car clubs registered pale by comparison.
“Cancer is a disease that doesn’t care about how old you are, whether you’re a blond or brunette, white or black,” Maguire says, and adds: “But someone will unlock the door to the cure, and I’m hoping it’s our million bucks that could help be the key.”
Vehicle registration is $30 (or more, if owners wish to donate), while a spectator entrance fee is $5. Maguire is still looking for donations and sponsors, but 100 per cent of all money raised is going directly to the Canadian Cancer Society.
“Nobody is making a profit here,” Maguire says. “The Canadian Cancer Society is looking after all of the registrations.”
As an incentive to encourage early registration by May 1, tire shops Blaskin and Lane of Calgary and Tire Warehouse of Edmonton are each donating $1,000 worth of rubber. The draw will be made May 3.
See www.coolcarscruising4cancer.ca, for more information.