September 2005 – After months and months of planning, the first annual Amanda’s Cruise for Juvenile Arthritis (ACJA) took off! My husband took his love of classic cars and the encouragement of a bunch of motorheads from an online chat room devoted to classic cars and parlayed it into a charity car cruise with the funds donated to the Arthritis Society for juvenile arthritis research.
Our inaugural cruise started in St. Mary’s, just outside of Stratford. A man by the name of Fat Chuk whom Tim met on the chat board offered the use of his land for the cruise. He owns a car restoration company on a sizable piece of land where there was more than ample parking for all the cars. The day dawned bright and beautiful and the weather was ideal. We had 17 cars join us for a long drive taking the participants up through Grand Bend and Goderich. Tim did an awesome job raising prizes for the raffles and we got a ton of food donated. A great time was had by everyone – even me, who tripped carrying a cooler and sprained my ankle! We raised almost $1,300 which, for a first event, was pretty darn good!