Giving Back

Volz’s ‘Jeep Fest’ Raises Money for A Cause

The staff of Volz Auto Group’s Meadowland of Carmel during Jeep Fest. Credits: Bob Dumas
From left, Putnam County Humane Society’s Renee Diaz and Michele Dugan, along with Sales Manager John Russell, pose with Shockey. Credits: Bob Dumas
John Russell, left, and Jim Rathschmidt of United for the Troops, show off one the gift boxes the group sends to deployed soliders. Credits: Bob Dumas
More than 50 Jeeps entered the Jeep Fest competition. Credits: Bob Dumas
A view of Jeep Fest from the dealership’s roof. Credits: Photo courtesy of Meadowlands at Carmel

MAHOPAC N.Y. — Jeep enthusiasts came out in force Saturday to show off their prize vehicles while helping to raise money for some good causes.

It was the second year in a row that Volz Auto Group’s Meadowland of Carmel (owned by Kenn, Jenn and Barbara Volz) held “Jeep Fest,”—an event that is part car show, part fundraiser.

Jen Austin, the dealership’s marketing manager, said that Jeep lovers pay an entry fee to show off their vehicles—this year there were more than 50 entries—and compete to win prizes.

Sign Up for E-News

Meanwhile, various charities set up booths throughout the grounds while the Volz staff cooked up hamburgers and hot dogs for the hungry attendees. There were t-shirts for sale as well.

The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation joined forces with #enlistme for the event. For every $30 donated, $250 was marked off the purchase of any new or pre-owned vehicle. The dealership will also donate $25 for every vehicle sold from Aug. 15 to Sept. 15. Money to the charities helps to build housing for disabled veterans.

Additionally GMC donates $5,000 to the cause.

“Our goal is to be around $12,000,” said John Russell, sales manager.

Russell said the idea for Jeep Fest came from the dealership’s customers.

“They are such enthusiasts,” he said. “It made sense to give it a try and last year was such a success it made sense to do it again. They put a lot of time into their Jeeps. It becomes a family project for some of them.”

The other charity at the center of Jeep Fest was the Putnam County Human Society, which was on hand with one of its favorite shelter dogs, 10-year-old Shockey, who was available for adoption.

Also at Jeep Fest was United for the Troops, an organization that sends gift boxes full treats to the troops overseas. The group’s representative, Jim Rathschmidt, said the organization has raised about $10,000 over a 10-month period, thanks in part to sales associate Mike Barrows who donates $50 to the group for every vehicle he sells.

“Without it, we could not operate,” Rathschmidt said, noting his group has sent about 13,000 boxes so far.

“Being a vet who served in Iraq and Afghanistan I can tell you that these (boxes) mean a lot,” Russell said. “It’s a little comfort from back home.”

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


God Is Just! Schneiderman Is Out!

Whenever you doubt that God is just, remember last Monday. That is the day New York state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman resigned.

As you know, I have had him in my sights for a long time. He has squandered our tax dollars with more than 100 lawsuits against the Trump administration. Plus, his lawsuits against Big Oil and trying to nullify our double jeopardy laws. Most will go nowhere as ...

Environmentalists Get Their Clock Cleaned

If you noticed, I have refrained from getting involved in all the recent Trump headlines. I really do not have anything to add to this discussion. What everyone is now hearing about possible corruption within the Justice Department, readers of this column knew months to a year ago. For me, it is finally validation of keeping you, my readers, on the cutting edge.

What is important to remember ...

It Wasn’t About the Economy or Jobs

Soon after President Trump was “crowned” by the Electoral College in November 2016, I wrote a column about Putnam County voters that garnered some attention—both good and bad. Several readers decried my conclusion that the overwhelming support of Putnam County voters for Trump was not due to economic anxiety or the unavailability of suitable jobs, but to the overarching fear ...

Bias in Media, in Me, in You

While listening to an interview with a voter on my car radio, I thought I had excess ear wax that obstructed my hearing. The voter (whose name is Bruce) said this about one of the qualifications that a Senate or House candidate must have to earn his vote: “I don’t want anyone with ideas. We have enough of those already.”

I’m a journalist and have been one my entire ...

Southern Discomfort: ‘Crimes of the Heart’

Editor’s Note: The author of this review is a board member of Axial Theatre.

Siblings cackling over their grandpappy’s coma.

A 24-year-old bride who says she shot and wounded her wealthy, hot-shot husband because she doesn’t like his looks (and doesn’t much care for the sound of his voice, either).

A 27-year-old aspiring singer-actress who puts on airs that ...

Cross My Legs and Hope to Die

One morning, I had a big cup of coffee as I usually do, and then I got in the car and drove 40 minutes to a clothing store I had been curious to check out. I don’t normally drive 40 minutes to go shopping, but since I am a stay-at-home mom and everyone knows we stay-at-home moms just spend our time shopping and eating bonbons, I figured, “What the hey.”

Having had the ...

Pretty in Raspberry Pink

“I got a pedicure today,” I said to my husband, showing off my freshly painted toes glimmering from beneath my flip flops.  “What do you think?”

“They’re orange,” he said. 

“They’re not orange,” I corrected him. “They’re cantaloupe.” He blinked a couple of times trying to process this irrelevant piece of ...