Friday, February 23 , 2018, 6:43 am | Fair 45º


Rally4Kids Rolls On for United Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Barbara County

More than 50 cars — of all vintages — join fun-filled, 2-day jaunt around the Central Coast


Saturday evening marked the finish of the fourth annual Rally4Kids, the United Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Barbara County’s biggest fund raising event of the year. And what a fun event it was.

Breaking from tradition, the rally was a two-day affair, taking drivers and navigators on a 203-mile adventure that included stops at Lake Casitas, Santa Barbara Pistachio Co. in the Cuyama Valley, the Santa Maria Airport, Talley Vineyards in Arroyo Grande and Sycamore Mineral Springs near Avila Beach. The overnight in Avila Beach allowed contestants time to enjoy cocktails, dinner and a soak in the spring waters.

Before returning to Santa Barbara, participants stopped for lunch at the Lompoc United Boys & Girls Club, where they toured the facility and learned about the services the club provides to local children. Arriving at the Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club in Carpinteria, the final event, a White Party on the Green, culminated in a festival of conversation, cocktails, dinner and awards.

The fundraiser is a mainstay of the United Boys & Girls Clubs’ annual budget, and this year it is projected to raise more than $200,000, which will be used to extend club hours and support the activities that are so crucial to local boys and girls.

The funds will allow local clubs to offer transportation services to children who would otherwise be unable to attend activities, hot meals and weekend activities. According to Rally4Kids co-chairman Monte Wilson, this year’s benefit appears to have exceeded fundraising expectations.

In all, 50 cars participated in the rally, including everything from a 1966 VW Beetle to a 2017 Ferrari California T. Other notable rides include a 1964 Ferrari 250 GT Lusso, an original 1963 Shelby 289 Cobra, 1972 Porsche RSR, 1956 Ford Thunderbird and a 2013 Mercedes-Benz E6.3 AMG station wagon.

The range and variety of vehicles was impressive and inclusive for just about any car enthusiast with a wanderlust for adventure.

The final dinner and awards ceremony was a lively event at the beautiful Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club.

Champagne was poured by Monica, the goddess of the grape, eight-foot wandering trees enchanted guests clad in white, the Belle Strings quartet entertained the crowd. Andrew Firestone returned for another year to emcee the event.

Fun was had by all while supporting and honoring the important work of the United Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Barbara County. Many of this year’s participants expressed their plans to take part in the 2018 rally, hoping to experience even more of the Central Coast — and possibly take home one of the coveted awards the rally winners vie for.

Click here for more information about the United Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Barbara County. Click here to make an online donation.

— Peter Hartmann and Stacey Wright make up the Urban Hikers team. Any opinions expressed are their own.

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