Members of the United States Army and Marine Corps will land at Chevrolet of Homewood on Saturday, July 15, for the annual “BBQ for the Troops” event.
The fundraising event for the USO takes place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the dealership, 18033 S. Halsted St. in Homewood. It is sponsored by the USO and Chicago Automobile Trade Association (CATA). CATA hosts the annual Chicago Auto Show at the McCormick Place.
The village of Homewood, along with local businesses, is partnering with the dealership. The Homewood Krispy Kreme and Home Depot are participating.
Activities planned for the day include serving hamburgers and hot dogs with all the trimmings, donated by Homewood Chevy. The food can be purchased for $5 per plate.
Home Depot is bringing building materials for kids to work with, giving them a hands-on experience. There will also be giveaways, said Andrea Malachowski, social media director at Homewood Chevy.
A military vehicle, a popular attraction from last year, will again be on display giving visitors a chance to walk through and explore. A second fun military-related activity for the kids is the “veteran’s buggy” manned by a group of veterans who take the kids for a ride in the vehicle. The veterans are also on hand to relate their stories to visitors.
In previous years, nearly 300 people attended the event at Homewood Chevy.
“Attendance is expected to be higher this year,” said Malachowski. “It just gets bigger every year.”
Malachowski explained that the USO and CATA began the fundraising event five years ago with dealers across the Chicago area. Chevrolet of Homewood began participating three years ago. Malachowski said last year there were 70 dealers holding the event.
“This year, there are 100 dealers participating,” she said. “The beauty of the event is that 100 per cent of the money raised is donated to the troops and their families. Last year, the total raised among the 70 dealers was $115,000. We anticipate it will be higher this year.”
Radio stations WTMX at 101.9 FM and WPWX at 92.3 FM will be broadcasting live.
“We feel (the event) is bringing the community together to participate in a very worthy cause,” Malachowski said.
For visitors, the event won’t be hard to find on Halsted Street.
“Just look for the white tents, the balloons and the military vehicles,” Malachowski said.
Further information on the event is available at www.homewoodchevy.com.