The 13th Annual Beeline Cruise-In brought in thousands of visitors this past April. Their interest in classic cars raised thousands of dollars that the Rim Country Classic Auto Club is ready to donate.
Thanks to entry fees, raffle tickets and a bit of leftover sponsor funds, the club is donating $20,300, the most money the club has ever raised with the event, to local charities.
According to Dan Haapala, publicity chairman for the 13th annual Cruise-In, the 2005 event raised $14,000, and the club's goal was to beat that figure.
The Auto Club distributed the money raised in $1,000 donations to 20 local nonprofits. CarQuest Auto Parts received $300 for its participation in Special Olympics.
The Rim Country Hospice Foundation accepted $1,000 in honor of Rodney Bice, a long-time member and past president of their organization, said Vicki Dietz, public relations coordinator for RTA Hospice and Palliative Care. Bice, who was featured on the front page of the Payson Roundup on April 11, when donations allowed him to leave his house for the first time in six years, passed away at hospice recently.
The money will be used for patients who have special needs outside of hospice benefits such as travel costs for family and medications outside of what hospice provides.
The Gila County Sheriff's Posse received $1,000, which they plan to use to buy radio equipment, said Captain Peter Orlando of the Gila County Sheriff's Posse.
Other charitable organizations who have or will receive donations from the Auto Club are: Payson Humane Society, Isabel Hunt Memorial Library in Pine, Payson Community Kids, Payson helping Payson, Payson Senior Citizens Center, Pine/Strawberry Area Food Bank, Payson Area Food Bank, Pine Senior Center, Payson Time Out Shelter, Payson Police Department for the Guardian Angels program, Habitat for Humanity, Rim Country Literacy, Whispering Hope Ranch, Take Pride Project for the Pine/Strawberry fuel break, Payson Fire Department for the fuels reduction program, Payson Animal Sanctuary and the Rim Country Museum.
The rest of the funds will be distributed at the next meeting of the Rim Country Classic Auto Club to be held at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 2, in the bingo hall of the Mazatzal Casino.
The meeting is open to the public.