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Annual car raffle set for Saturday

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One lucky ticket holder will take home a brand new car this weekend. They’ll also support Hobbs children at the same time.

The 34th Annual Boys and Girls Car Raffle kicks off 5 p.m. this Saturday at the Lea County Event Center’s main floor, where people can dine, bid on silent auction items, receive door prizes and wait to see if they’re one of the last couple hundred tickets in the mix. The last person standing gets to choose their favorite of four vehicles this year: Toyota C-HR crossover, Buick Encore SUV, Ford Mustang or Nissan Frontier truck.

“There is a new wrinkle that we’re doing,” Mike Clampitt, executive director of the Hobbs club, said Tuesday. “We’re going to have some silent auction items. So, far we’ve got some really cool ones. We have two sets of four reserve seats and a parking pass to Texas Tech football games.”

The rest of the car raffle remains like it’s been done for the past two years, according to Clampitt. In 2015, a format change in the raffle was introduced to shorten the time-span of the event, which had lasted for several hours in the past. Rather than drawing every ticket of about 2,000, the Boys and Girls Club draws out finalists for the car.

“We came up with this and I think it’s working pretty well,” he said. “Everybody knows they can from 5 to 6, see that their number if on the screen and made it in the drawing. And then at 6, we’ll draw out those 200 finalists and go from there.”

It remains to be seen what car the winner will pick out on Saturday, but winners from the past two years chose a Ford Mustang. Hobbsan Jerry Bush drove home his Mustang in 2015, while Seminole resident A.C. “Junior” Schrader got a phone call during a hunting trip in Colorado about winning the 2016 raffle. If you’ve got the winning ticket, the vehicle is free except costs for title, tax and license.

It’s not just about winning a car though. The annual car raffle serves as the Hobbs Boys and Girls Club’s main fundraiser each year.

Bill Richards, president of the board of directors for the Boys and Girls Club, said the fundraiser helps children from the “southside, eastside … all of Hobbs.” He explained money raised from the annual car raffle goes towards maintenance and upkeep.

“It’s used for programs for the kids, the sports — the flag football, the basketball,” Richards said. “We have a cooking class there. We have arts there. Since we moved to the new club, we’ve added so many programs for our children and our community that it costs a lot. That’s where that money is divvied up for. It’s to keep the programs going that we have and make sure that the kids — when they come — they have something to do. They’re safe and they’re comfortable.”

Car raffle tickets are $50 and may be purchased at the Boys and Girls Club.

“Please come and support the boys and girls club,” Richards added. “Come and join. Have a good time and we are very thankful and very grateful for our community.”

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