Save the Date: 6th Annual Garage Party to Benefit Bridge Communities

About 400 people are expected to attend the annual event, which raises thousands of dollars and is a break from the winter blahs.

Getting around DuPage County can be a challenge for those without a car, since public transportation isn’t that accommodating. To assist some of those in need of a safe, reliable vehicle, Bridge Communities helps provide repairs and safe vehicles to homeless families in need in DuPage County.

Later this month, Bridge Builders, a group of community volunteers who are dedicated to helping Bridge Communities, will host the 6th annual Garage Party to benefit Bridge Communities’ Auto Donation Program.

The nonprofit partners with Village Garage & Tire to ensure that vehicles Bridge families use are safe. The organization budgets $35,000 annually to the auto repairs fund, said Margo Matthew, Bridge Communities director of grants. The funds raised at the Garage Party and through it’s Bridge Builders help the nonprofit provide road worthy vehicles for clients, she said.

The Garage Party provides roughly $20,000 each year to fund the Auto Donation Program, according to Bridge Communities.

“Public transportation in DuPage County is a problem, so Bridge created this Auto Donation Program to benefit our families and help them with their transportation needs,” Matthew said. “Many families come to us with a car in need of repairs or no car at all and they are so incredibly grateful when they can drive a safe and reliable car.”

The Garage Party will be held on Jan. 26 from 7 p.m. to midnight at Gearhead European Auto Repair, 474 Forest Ave. Tickets are $35.

“Bridge Communities receives approximately 35 donated automobiles annually,” Matthew said. “We used to receive many more autos annually, but due to the downturn in the economy, community residents are keeping their cars longer and so we do not receive as many.”

In 2012, Bridge Communities received 33 donated automobiles and it is always in great need of vehicle donations. Anyone interested in donating a vehicle is encouraged to contact Karen Stewart at Bridge Communities at 630-545-0610 to receive information on the donation process.

“It benefits both the donor and our program! It is a win, win partnership,” Matthew said.

The annual Garage Party draws about 400 people and according to Bridge Communities, the event has become a break from the winter blahs.

This year, the event will feature music from the Michael Heaton Band, appetizers from Tap House Grill and Northside Sports Bar & Grill, and a cash bar featuring wines from Cab’s Wine Bar Bistro, along with a selection of beer.

Sponsors for this year’s Garage Party include: Baird & Warner Goodwill Network, Bane Art, Cab’s Wine Bar Bistro, Farwell Real Estate, Gearhead European Auto Repair, Glen Ellyn Bank & Trust, Northside Sports Bar & Grill, Tap House Grill, and Tina Koral Gardens.

To learn how to join the Bridge Builders, please send an email. To learn more about the vehicle donation process contact Karen Stewart at Bridge Communities at 630-545-0610.

The Garage Party to Benefit Bridge Communities’ Auto Donation Program will be held Jan. 26 from 7 p.m. to midnight at Gearhead European Auto Repair, 474 Forest Ave. Tickets are $35 per person and can be purchased online or at the door.

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