Christmas seems to sneak up on everyone. December is four months away but the Hall County Sheriff’s Office is preparing for the holiday by raising money for its annual bicycle drive.
To give back to the community and help children whose families unable to afford many gifts, the Sheriff’s Office provides a Christmas bicycle program that gives away about 100 bikes to local children. Money raised to purchase the bikes comes from fundraisers held throughout the year, including the Sheriff’s Show & Shine Car Show.
Sheriff's Show & Shine Car Show
Where: Sheriff’s Office headquarters, 2859 Browns Bridge Road, Gainesville
When: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11
Cost: Free to guests, $25 car show entry
“It was just a way of reaching out to the community in a different way,” Capt. Cindy Mustachio said. “Car show people, if you know them, are very neat people and very giving people and it was a way for the Sheriff’s Office to do the same thing.”
This year’s event is set for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11, at Sheriff’s Office headquarters, 2859 Browns Bridge Road, Gainesville. Guests can attend free; the fee to enter a vehicle in the car show is $25.
The show will include custom and classic cars, trucks and motorcycles on display. The Sheriff’s Office will have its own vehicles entered as well. There also will be food, bounce houses, rides, door prizes, raffles and music.
“In the Sheriff’s Office, we do run across folks that are less fortunate and need assistance in the community,” Mustachio said. “And that’s kind of where we see that the hardest hit folks are the children, so we have always tried to come together ... and donate toys to Toys for Tots or get involved with coat drives. This is just another way that we give back to the community.”
Mustachio said the event has grown each year. It’s never had fewer than 100 cars and it has grown to at least 300 visitors. Though most of those cars entered don’t pre-register, she’s confident the cars will start rolling in.
“The car show people are kind of funny and kind of watch the weather and things of that nature before they start saying, ‘OK, I’m going,’” Mustachio said. “That’s the way it’s been every year. We’ve had like 10 or 15 pre-register, and then the day of the show, they come out of the woodwork, which is great.”
With vendors, activities, guests and cars, there’s a lot to coordinate on the day of the event. Mustachio said the Sheriff’s Office staff “never worry about it” and “just kind of roll with it.”
“My only big (event) here was our open house a few months ago,” said Derreck Booth, spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office. “And I will just say that the day of, I was worried, and this Sheriff’s Office just comes together and it just happens.”
Last year, the Sheriff’s Office was able to raise more than $10,000, which led to the donation of 138 bikes to children in need, along with gift cards for families.
“It’s more or less about a child having something they can call their own on Christmas day,” Mustachio said.