Rancho hospital to host first annual car show

DOWNEY - Amy Salinas is an extremely talented Occupational Therapist who has dreamt for years of holding a car show to raise funds for the Brain Injury Program at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center, where she works with advanced robotic devices to assist patients in regaining function and self-esteem. Now her dream is within sight, because on Saturday, September 29 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Rancho will hold "Rebuilding Cars, Rebuilding Lives," the hospital's First Annual Car Show.

"It will be an inspirational show and fundraiser to help rebuild the lives of children and adult brain injury survivors," Amy said.

Amy and her fellow event committee members have put their passion for cars to work recruiting great cars for the show. Because of their efforts, more than 100 vehicles are expected to participate. Cars will be shown in the hospital parking lots facing Imperial Highway. Parking will be in the hospital's parking structure, which is located north of Imperial Highway off Old River School Road. The event is free to the public.

"Our Car Show will bring together people from the community with people living with disabilities to celebrate their shared passion for cars," Amy said. "I've learned from the patients at Rancho that you have to give everything you have to reach your dream, and that's what our entire committee has done for this Car Show," she said. "We are so excited to finally experience the thrill of having these spectacular vehicles right here on the Rancho campus."

The Rancho Los Amigos Foundation is hosting the show, in association with the Rancho Los Amigos Brain Injury Service and the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department County Services Bureau.

"This special car show is a fundraiser that will allow us to purchase cutting-edge therapy equipment and develop innovative therapeutic programs for brain injury survivors at Rancho," Amy said. "Contributions to this event are tax-deductible, and we will have trophies, food, raffle prizes, music, many interesting vendors, food trucks and even VIP guests!"

Car Show committee member and Rancho retiree Mickey Christiason said there would be a wide variety of vehicles to see and experience. "We're reaching out to owners of beautifully restored pre-1976 vehicles ranging from muscle cars to hot rods and street rods, from sports cars to funny cars and from low riders to cruisers," he said. "We're also looking for fabulous trucks, specialty unique vehicles and accessible vans and cars for individuals with disabilities."

The Car Show entrance fee for cars (1976 and older) is $25 through Friday, which includes raffle tickets, priority entrance and priority parking. Modified Accessible vans & vehicles for the disabled (any year) are $10. Vehicle owners can register at rancho.org/carshow. Day of the event registration is $30 per car. Car show attendance is free for all spectators.

For further information, call Amy at (562) 401-6275 or reach her online at amysalinas@dhs.lacounty.gov. "We hope that this Car Show will be the beginning of a new tradition of annual Rancho Car Shows for our community," Amy said. "We can hardly wait for the Car Show to begin, because we know it will be fun for everyone!"

********** Published: September 20, 2012 - Volume 11 - Issue 23