Car Clubs, Racers and Supporters Raise $60,000 for PVGP Charities with Shifting Gears Campaign

PITTSBURGH, PA (December, 2020) Like many large-scale events this year, the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix was affected by the pandemic. Ten days of car shows, races and motorsport parties were canceled, but that didn’t stop the Grand Prix from delivering a meaningful donation for our charitable partners.

This past May, the PVGP announced it was canceling its 2020 Race Week events and “Shifting Gears” to encourage its car club partners to get out on the road in the safety of their own cars. The result – more than two dozen events were held throughout the summer and fall, raising $60,000!

We applaud our racers, volunteers, car club partners and event participants who got involved and made incredible efforts to keep the Grand Prix spirit alive. From staging events to donating their 2020 registration fees, the response was overwhelming and vital to our charity mission.” said Dan DelBianco, PVGP executive director.

Joseph S. Martz, president of Merakey Allegheny Valley School, said, “thank you for all you did to make lemonade out of lemons, we are incredibly grateful to the PVGP and its supporters for putting your hearts and souls into the “Shifting Gears” campaign.”

Jesse Torisky, CEO of the Autism Society of Pittsburgh, exclaimed “during this pandemic autistic people haven’t stopped being autistic and they need our services now more than ever and likewise, the PVGP supporters have not stopped working – we are humbled by their tireless efforts.

Sixteen racers generously donated their 2020 race entry fees, crossing the finish line with a whopping $10,450 donation! PVGP Chairman Jim Dolan was the first racer to make a donation and said “this has been an unprecedented display of what community involvement is all about and I thank everyone”. Stu Long and the team at Nelson Ledges staged a Test & Tune in August to benefit the PVGP and added $1,150 more!

Ed and Ann Rice lead the parade in their Porsche 928

The Porsche Club raised $6,100 with Parade Laps in Schenley Park on our normally scheduled Race Day on Sunday, July 26, and they also held several driving tours. The idea to get together was the mastermind of Ed Rice, President of the Allegheny Region Porsche Club. “The impromptu event was a stunning success”, according to Ed “I was in a melancholy mood when the event was canceled and I just didn’t want to sit around and do nothing that weekend. Then I thought, what the heck, every year in the days before Race Weekend in Schenley Park I drive the racecourse to get into the vibe of the PVGP. I decided I was going to invite all of my Porsche Club friends to join me.”

While the PVGP Walnut Street Car Show was officially canceled, organizer Greg Farrell had the great idea to turn the event into a fundraiser. A dozen cars showed up that night to park on Walnut Street and meet up informally and 31 people sent in donations that raised $5,800!

The Pittsburgh Section of the Mercedes-Benz Club matched the first $1,000, of member donations for a $2,555 donation and added $1,000 with a fall road tour to Moraine State Park.

Jason Uhler and the Greater Pittsburgh Mustang Club raised $2,137 while touring the countryside in their pony cars in our Orange Belt Tour in July. The Marque of the Year Corvettes, led by Jim Kinest, staged a Corvette Club Caravan Challenge in May and donated their 2020 registration fees, $1,448!

The Pitt Birds Thunderbird Club held several events and donated $1,590, which is remarkable considering the size of the club, many thanks to Jerry & Barb Longstreth for leading that effort. The BMW Club always supports the PVGP and raised $1,175 while the West Penn Miata Club pitched in $800.

Karen Hanchett and Patrick Martin staged two Motorbike Tours to Jamison Farm in Latrobe that raised $1,200. Bud Osbourne and the Western PA Triumph Association worked on these tours and the PVGP July Countryside Tour that raised $2,030.

Bentley of Pittsburgh Car Show

The Rolls Royce & Bentley Club raised a grand total of $14,080 through three separate events. Greg & Christie Farrell hosted a party at their home in June, raising $1,400. Bentley Pittsburgh hosted a car show at their dealership in Wexford in September that brought in $7,950. With an auction of her Handmade Glass Art Terri Hohmann added $3,530, and Rolls Royce Club President Chris Davis’s neighbors’ “Little Miss Cookie Squad” baked and sold cookies weekly this summer for $1,200.

The ALFISTI Alfa Romeo Club pledged $1,000 from its July Over the River Tour. West Penn Miata Club raised $800 with its own kick-off style Rallye. Jack and Cathy Dernorsek led the 3 Rivers Region Model A Restorers Club on a Red Belt Tour in August that brought in $465.

Land Rover North Hills sponsored the October 24/25 Fall Car Show at Pitt Race Complex that raised $2,100 the same weekend that the Western PA Triumph Club and Gary Fredo hosted a road tour netting $1,555. To get the PVGP over the $60,000 mark the Greater Pittsburgh MG Club donated $1,000 from its membership.


All of these clubs and organizations have gone above and beyond to help our charity partners this year!
2020 PVGP Driving Events 
Club/Event Date Details Donation
Racer Donations from 2020 Entry Fees July $10,450
General Donations thru PVGP website Ongoing link $1,815
Donations in Honor of PVGP Volunteer Les Walter Ongoing $450
PVGP Facebook Fundraiser by Matt Little Ongoing link $915
Mercedes-Benz Club – Matching Funds Ongoing link $2,555
Corvette Club Caravan Challenge & MOY Donations Saturday, May 30 link $1,448
Rolls Royce Club Party Saturday, June 27 link $1,400
Pitt Birds Thunderbird Club Donations Saturday, July 5 link $1,590
ALFISTI Alfa Romeo Club – Over the River Tour Saturday, July 11 link $1,000
Walnut Street Car Show Donations Monday, July 20 link $5,800
Countryside Tour to Jamison Farm Thursday, July 23 link $2,030
Greater Pittsburgh Mustang Club Orange Belt Tour July 25/26 Weekend link $2,137
Motorbike Countryside Tour – Matched by Dollar Bank Saturday, July 25 link $890
West Penn Miata Club Rallye Saturday, July 25 link $800
Porsche Club Raceday Parade Laps and Driving Tours Sunday, July 26 link $6,100
Test & Tune at Nelson Ledges Tuesday, August 11 link $1,150
BMW Club Tours and Events Ongoing $1,175
3 Rivers Region Model A Restorers Club Saturday, August 29 link $485
Bentley Pittsburgh Car Show Saturday, September 19 link $7,950
Terri Hohmann Glass Art Auction at Bentley Car Show Saturday, September 19 link $3,530
Vintage Motorbike Backroads Fall Tour Saturday, September 19 link $310
Little Miss Cookie Squad Fundraiser July/August $1,200
Mercedes-Benz Club  –  Moraine State Park Drive for Charity Saturday, October 3 link $1,000
WPTA “Caution, Curves Ahead” Driving Tour & Poker Run Saturday, October 24 link $1,555
Greater Pittsburgh MG Club Ongoing $1,000
Fall Car Show at Pitt Race sponsored by Land Rover North Hills Weekend Oct 24/25 link $1,420
Total Donation $60,000

Please help support the PVGP charities: the Autism Society of Pittsburgh and Merakey Allegheny Valley School. The Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix Association is a 501 c 3 non-profit charity with the purpose of staging a world-class event in order to raise funds for individuals in the Pittsburgh region with autism and intellectual and developmental disabilities. To date, the PVGP has donated $5.9 million to these wonderful local charities. Your generous donations keep our event running at top speed and help our cause. Donate today!