This makes up for the flowers he didn’t get her on their 40th anniversary this July. Gary Allen, morning host of newsradio wood 1300, was the lucky winner of a 2009 Corvette, a car that sells in the $50,000 range and boasts about 435 horsepower.
The car was the prize for this year’s Grand Valley Corvette Association annual raffle, which the club has been holding for 28 years. The ticket sales for the raffle were sold out this year, and allowed the club to give a $15,000 check to an organization for Downs syndrome children and $15,000 check for a Spina Bifida foundation. In the 28 years of the raffle, the group has raised and donated just under $600,000.
The couple took possession of the vehicle on Monday, September 14 at Kool Chevrolet on Plainfield Avenue. Laurie, Gary’s wife, said that in their family, she has always driven the cars without automatic transmission, so this car should be hers. “He always lets me be the one to drive the sticks, so I guess this is my car,” she stated.
She said the couple has already had conversations about whether the family dog, Calvin, will be allowed in the vehicle. He says no, she says yes. “I have a sheepskin I put in the back and there is a perfect space for him right there.”
Dave Bailey, sales manager at Kool Chevrolet, said he is proud to partner with the automotive club in their efforts. “I never really realized how hard they work selling the tickets to raise this money,” he said. “Members are out at car shows every weekend, trail-ering the car all over the state and selling tickets. We are proud to be part of this every year and will continue
to do so.”
Bailey said Allen buys tickets every year and he is happy the couple won the summer of their 40th anniversary. It is also the Grand Valley Corvette Association’s 40th year, making it an extra special coincidence. “This is a cool (Kool?) story,” Bailey said. “A Corvette is nice, but so is a 40th anniversary.”
Allen said he thought the first trip in the car would likely be a nice color tour around the state.
“This is a happy day,” said Gail Schuiling, chairman of the raffle committee. “We don’t do this so people can win a Corvette, though. We don’t stand out in the sun and rain every summer for this. We do it for the children, so those kids can have a better quality of life.”
She said more information on the club and their annual raffle can be found at grandvalleycorvette.org.
Still, it’s not too bad to have the car, either. “Thank you and get away from my car,” joked Allen. Bailey said the fundraiser is a lot of fun and he enjoys participating. He invited people to come on down to Kool and get in line up to buy tickets for next year.