News & Events

Chicago Auto Show charity benefit raises $1.7 million

Eighteen area charities last night shared in $1.7 million raised by the 2010 Chicago Auto Show's benevolent event, First Look for Charity, and one lucky winner left with the keys to a brand-new Chevrolet Equinox.

About 7,200 people attended First Look for Charity, helping to raise $1,701,012. The event is held the evening before the annual auto show opens its 10-day public run.

"First Look for Charity is a great instrument for the area's new-car dealers to show the positive impact they have on their community," said John Phelan, chairman of this year's auto show. "All the benefiting charities are involved locally, so the money that's raised in Chicago stays in Chicago."

As the name of the event implies, those who attend First Look for Charity are part of the premier viewing of each year's Chicago Auto Show. Tickets to the fund-raiser are $225 each, and purchasers can elect to have their proceeds equally benefit all participating charities, or any one charity for which they have an affinity. For the event, the auto show floor is replete with a variety of food and beverage stations.

A highlight of the evening this year was the drawing for a grand prize vehicle: a 2010 Chevrolet Equinox compact crossover. This year's event awarded the Equinox to Curt Lundquist of Arlington Heights.

"I've never won a vehicle before, but I'm also very lucky in love," Lundquist said. When asked if the Equinox is more likely to be driven by him or his wife, Janice, Lundquist remarked, "What do you think?"

Proceeds of Lundquist's ticket benefited Clearbrook. The ticket purchaser is on the organization's board of directors. In all, 18 charities profited from the event.

Other organizations participating in the 2009 First Look for Charity include Advocate Hope Children's Hospital, Autism Speaks, Boys and Girls Clubs of Chicago, Campagna Academy, Cancer Health Alliance of Metropolitan Chicago, and Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago.

Also, Catholic Charities, Diocese of Joliet; Children's Memorial Hospital, Evans Scholars Foundation, Franciscan Community Benefit Services, and the Ray Graham Association for People with Disabilities.

And, Misericordia Heart of Mercy, Respiratory Health Association of Metropolitan Chicago, Spina Bifida Association of Illinois, St. Coletta's of Illinois Foundation, St. Coletta's Foundation of Illinois, St. James Hospital & Health Centers, and the Jesse White Tumbling Team.

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