First annual Chicago Toy Run

When I first set out to launch “The Driven Fiduciary,” I promised readers that they could expect a mix of articles that would primarily focus on the financial markets and various wealth management topics. However, I also promised that also break it up and write about some cool things that I got to be a part of, or maybe something with an automotive focus. This article represents both of the latter.

About a month ago I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to be a part of the first annual Chicago Toy Run. Travel obligations over the last couple of weeks / the holidays have kept me from writing about it until now, but I wanted to be sure I did a post about it.

Over the last couple of years I have developed a great group of friends from the Chicago Car Community. More recently, my friends and I have wanted to be able to host an event of our own. We have had the opportunity to be a part of so many great car events put on by others that we were to the point where we wanted to return the favor by hosting one ourselves. We had also been to events / car shows where there was a charitable theme behind the actual gathering, and that was a component we had always really respected. Ultimate Road Rally and Irongate Motor Condos have always done a great job with that for Cals Angels. So, when my friend Mike Kuliz, founder of 312 Supercars, approached me with the idea and asked me to help him and a couple others put on the first Chicago Toy Run, I was all in.

On December 22 over 100 people from the Chicago car community gathered at Gibsons in Oakbrook to donate toys, congregate, and catch up with people that they had not seen in some months. The turnout had far exceeded even our highest expectations given that this was our first attempt at the event with only a few weeks of planning. The best thing about the Chicago Car Community is that it is mainly a great group of people that come together sharing a similar passion for cars. People of all ages, walks of life, and various types of cars (american muscle cars all the way up to some of the worlds most coveted HyperCars.) come together and build friendships. However I have also found the Chicago Car community to be an extremely giving group of people. Definitely breaking certain stereotypes that some may associate with people who may drive cars of this caliber.

The only downside to being a “car guy” based in the Chicago is that our season is, well, limited. Typically by November most people will have their cars tucked away in storage until next year. Unfortunately what this means is that many of the great relationships you had built in the community go somewhat ignored until the next 50 degree sunny day.

We wanted our first annual toy run to not only be an event raising items for children in need, but also an opportunity to catch up with friends. Luckily, we ended up with an uncharacteristically beautiful sunny day for the event. Guests brought out all types of rides from Ferraris, Lamborghinis, muscle cars, etc. More importantly, they brought these cars completely jam packed with all types of toys. Diners / passerbys at Gibsons were perhaps a bit confused about what was going on inside of the restaurant.

The day after the event at Gibsons, a smaller group of us who organized the event gathered to actually distribute the toys. Our first stop was the Ronald McDonald house at Dupage Hospital. We had a chance to get a full tour of the Ronald McDonald house and to learn more about the facility and the types of families they are able to bring assistance to. We then dropped off the second half to benefit Becca’s LEGacy.

In all, we were able to collect over 1,100 toys during the event. We are incredibly grateful to all who attended and donated. We also were very fortunate enough to have a handful of local business owners come out and support the event in force. Some to mention

Primary Beneficiaries

Ronald Mcdonald House of Dupage Hospital

The Ronald McDonald House near Northwestern Medicine Central DuPage House (CDH) opened in 2015 as the fifth Ronald McDonald House in the Chicagoland area.  The House is located across the street from CDH and serves families of children being treated at CDH, Delnor Hospital, Northwestern Medicine Chicago Proton Center, and Marianjoy.

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Becca’s Legacy

Becca’s LEGacy began out of Becca’s wish to have her own foundation to help other children with cancer.   When we asked Becca what she wanted her foundation to be about, she told us that she wanted to raise awareness about childhood cancer, help find a cure, and give toys to hospitalized kids with cancer to help  them  feel  better.   Her final wish was that we carry on with her dream and “do her foundation.” 

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