For the 12th year running, the Mingus Union High School Auto Club is hosting its car show.
The event takes place Saturday, March 25, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at MUHS. It is co-sponsored by the Verde Valley Corvette Club.
In 2016, the show featured over 80 cars, trucks and SUVs — more than in 2015, when attendance lagged a bit. Nonetheless, the club hopes to outdo itself this year and attract closer to 100 cars, matching the number of entrants the club helped attract during last year’s Walkin’ On Main Car Show.
“Imagine, 100 cars at $20 apiece,” said Andy Hooton, Mingus Union High School’s Automotive Technology instructor. “That’s $2,000, directly to these kids.”
Hooton acknowledged that the entry fee is slightly higher than the $5 entrants shelled out for Walkin’ On Main, but added that the money raised is used to bolster the auto club’s — and MUHS’ automotive technology curriculum, as a whole — potential.
The three-year program offers high-schoolers 18 transferable credit hours and a certificate in automotive technology from Yavapai College.
Shawn Mayo, MUHS senior and auto club president, has graduated from the program with his certificate. Many other students have graduated from Hooton’s program and are working in the industry.
Regardless of successes, Hooton said there are always challenges on the horizon, particularly when it comes to providing equipment for his students. Funds generated from the car show and other fundraisers go a long way.
“I didn’t know anything about cars before,” said Connor McTurk, MUHS sophomore and auto club secretary. “I got involved because I thought it would be a whole new learning experience, and it is. I’ve learned a lot.”
“A year out of high school, [these students] will probably make more than the teachers here,” Hooton said, adding that the community has shown outstanding support for the program, w hich he hopes will keep graduates in the Verde Valley and on a lifelong path of learning.
“And it’s a great time,” Hooton said of the car show, adding that any cars, trucks, SUVs and clubs are welcome. “Show up and drive on in .... And if you want to give more, you can. We have a bucket. We’ll take your money. I’m never going to say no to that.”
During the show, approximately 10 trophies, all donated by O’Reilly Auto Parts, will be awarded entrants.
There is a $2 fee for spectators.
MUHS is located at 1801 E. Fir Street. For questions, email Hooton at firstname.lastname@example.org.