Leave it to auto enthusiast, Stutz Factory owner and community philanthropist Turner Woodard to create a unique and exciting way for local charities to raise money.
“Sure, the Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation can just write a check for a worthy cause we believe in and we certainly do”, states Turner Woodard, head of the Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation, “but our marquee event is a road rally where we bring together 12 charities, they get to know each other in a competitive and social setting and every charity who participates receives a donation”.
The total amount awarded is over $50,000 dollars, with the winning charity receiving $12,500, second $10,000 and third place $7,500. The remaining nine charities receive $2,500 dollars each. The charities competing are College Mentor for Kids, Heartland Film Festival, IMPD Mounted Horse Patrol, Indy Humane, Indiana Landmarks, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, WFYI, National Junior Tennis League (NJTL), The Villages, Christel House, Children’s Bureau and A Little Help.
For those new to road rallys, it’s a fun-filled, adventurous, scenic drive with a purpose! Rallys don’t involve speed and teams can compete in regular passenger cars. They really only need some directions, a watch, a pencil, paper and a keen sense of awareness! Each car has a driver and navigator. The winner is determined by the most correct answers completed in the lenient designated timeframe.
IndyCar driver Conor Daly is this year’s celebrity starter. The Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation Charity Road Rally is Saturday, October 5th. It starts at 10am at The Stutz Factory in downtown Indianapolis, drives to a lunch stop at King Dough Pizza in Bloomington and rallies to a finish with an awards dinner at Turner Woodard’s Wasatch Lake Retreat in Poland, Indiana, all while meandering through the Indiana country side following clues and looking for signs and landmarks to answer specific questions for points.
The family foundation is truly a family affair with Diann Woodard, TJ Woodard, Whitney Woodard, Taylor Woodard and extended family all lending a hand to make sure everyone feels welcome. “The rally encourages charity staff members, donors and their board of directors to work together as teams and get to know each other better by creatively solving a driving, road sign quest”, says TJ Woodard.
“Too often charities are competing for the same donors. By bringing 12 charities together to compete at an event, the charities get to better know each other, how they can help each other and the safety net to our community grows wider and stronger than previously may have existed before”, adds Taylor Woodard, who travels in from Denver, Colorado for each rally.
Although the Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation has a formal mission statement, the bottom line is GET INVOLVED and each family member is deeply passionate about improving their local community.
“I know for many it’s a different sort of day,” Turner says. “That is one of our goals. We hope all of what we are doing will help in some meaningful way.”
As new and pressing needs arise in our local community, the Woodard Van Riper Family Foundation will continue to be a rallying cry for local charities to help them make a difference.