Final Summer Charity Barbecue and Car Show announced

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The Time for Summer Charity Barbecue and Car Show Fundraiser has been a staple in the community bringing car enthusiasts from across the province to the area for 15 years, and this 2019’s event on May 17 is expected to be the largest and most memorable as creator Doug Mowbray has decided it will be the final one in this style at the Homestead Co-op parking lot in Carman.

“Patrick was killed on May 17, 2003, and we wanted to do something so the barbecue/car show started the year after,” said Mowbray. “We’ve decided it’s been 15 years since then and we have been doing this car show that long as well. We only had about five cars out for our first one and maybe some hot dogs for sale, but now I’ve had to ask for the closure of the road because it’s getting so big.”

The road in question is on the north side of the Co-op home store and over 30 cars will be lined up for the evening car show. Mowbray has been overjoyed by the support from the community and car enthusiasts alike, but the work is beginning to pile up and he feels it’s going to have to change as his time is really filling up.

“I don’t know if it will continue. I like to have control and I don’t know how I’d feel with someone just taking over,” laughed Mowbray. “It’s going to be hard to let it go. Maybe someone will run it but I haven’t decided yet. I’ve also let all the sponsors know this is the final year doing this by sending out letters of thanks to all of them. We just can’t do it in the format anymore, maybe we’ll just have a small get together in a back yard or something but we haven’t decided.”

Mowbray had planned to dial things back this year as costs have risen and he wasn’t planning on making it a big expensive event. Instead, friends urged him to go big or go home.

“This year our prices for things will go up a bit and I want to make sure people bring change, coins and paper money, as we’ll need a big float to help pay for everything,” he chuckled. “There will be grand prizes, I don’t want to spoil it but they are exciting prizes. We have raised $75,000 in the 15 years we’ve been doing the car show and a good portion of that has stayed in our community.”

The money stays in the community through Carman Palliative Care and the Patrick Memorial Fund, which goes back to a student who shows qualities resembling Patrick Mowbray and is decided on by a vote through teachers at Miami School.

“Patrick was a tree planter in Dryden, so he and friends were in Winnipeg and heading home to Roland and a drunk driver hit them and killed Patrick,” he explained. “That’s where this all started. I was giving too much money to that group in Winnipeg and we wanted to be more local so we decided to stop donating to the group in Winnipeg and keep it more local with the bursary and Carman Palliative Care.”

The event has been registered with the Manitoba Association of Car Clubs, meaning car clubs around Manitoba can get involved with the show. There are no registration fees.

“We give away prizes to a few of the car guys to say thanks for supporting our event,” said Mowbray. “Some of them at least get something for showing up with their cars. We can’t give everyone something but we do hand out something. Come down and have some food, show off your car and raise funds for Patrick’s memorial fund and Palliative Care in Carman.”

Ernie Ens has taken care of all of the music at the barbecue in the past and has even gone as far as to bring live bands in for previous events. Mowbray is thankful for the support from Ens over the years and expects another great show from the talented deejay/performer. The meal at the event is a backyard barbecue style with hot dogs, potato salad, beans, macaroni salad, and a few other delicacies. it all depends on who is developing the menu for the evening.

There is a big jug for donations to Patrick’s Memorial Fund and Carman Palliative Care at the event, along with a rainbow auction with prizes donated from businesses in the community.

“Stay alive and don’t drink and drive in memory of Patrick Mowbray,” he said. “I don’t want anyone to go through what our family has gone through.”

The event is May 17, a Friday, and runs from 4-8 p.m.

“A big thanks must go out to Wheels Car Club as we need a car club to do this because we use their insurance and things, and Co-op has insurance too, but car clubs across Manitoba have insurance if they register with MACC,” he added.