ELKHART, Ind. – Organizers are gearing up for the 23rd annual Bids for Kids charity auction benefitting the Boys & Girls Club of Elkhart County, Ind. This year’s invitation-only event is set for Friday, Oct. 6, in the Orthwein Pavilion at the RV/MH Hall of Fame.
And, once again, the RV industry is expected to turn out in droves to lend its enthusiastic support to the charity auction that has, for the most part, been spearheaded in recent years by Jason Lippert and Michilah Grimes of LCI Industries.
“We are really excited about this year’s event,” Grimes told RVBusiness. “We have some new, exciting items that are going to be offered, but at the end of the day, it’s truly amazing to see the industry and those outside of the industry come together to support such a staple in our community. The Boys & Girls Clubs take such good care of our kiddos before and after school by providing a positive, safe place for kids to go. And it’s evident in the way the RV community responds that they want to support that and be a part of it.”
Grimes, LCI’s director of Corporate & Community Impact, emphasized how much of a positive impact the Boys & Girls Clubs have for Elkhart County.
“I’ve been a part of it for 12 years now, and to see the growth and people getting involved and committed to staying involved, knowing that every year we need to raise the amount of funds to keep the doors open and keep providing meals and snacks and resources for kids in our community. It’s truly humbling,” she said.
In addition to the auction itself, which has raised millions of dollars over the years, this year’s event will also feature a presentation by Tami Hicks, the new president and CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs for Elkhart County. She replaced Kevin Deary, who retired at the end of 2022 after serving in his role for 28 years.
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Elkhart County, which began operations in 1956, offer programming and service opportunities for children and teens to reach their full potential within the community. Each day, the Clubs provide powerful relationships with the youth they serve and open avenues of opportunity for young people across their community by offering safe places where young people can learn, grow and succeed.
In fact, in 2022, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Elkhart County impacted the lives of 5,241 youths, served over 142,000 meals and snacks. Reading scores for those youths taking part in the Indiana Kids programs saw 167% and 59% improvements in their reading and math scores, respectively.
“There’s just so much good that comes out of this event. It’s just a ripple effect, not only for the Boys & Girls Clubs, kids and staff and our community, but then also how you see that play out in other events throughout the community,” Grimes said.