To ensure that his students are getting the best training, teacher Jonathan Dorr formed the car club at the beginning of the school year as a way to get all of his 90 ROP students working together on projects. The students are divided into three sections throughout the school day, but once a week during lunch, they gather to discuss projects and tinker with the equipment.
The auto technology program runs on a shoestring budget, so to raise funds for new parts and equipment to begin more challenging projects, the club will host its inaugural car show Saturday, May 5 in the student parking lot on Oak Street, across from the Brentwood Post Office.
“Not all the students have their own car to work on, so I thought the club could have a group project so that everyone always has something to do,” Dorr said. “However, money is tight. We brainstormed the idea of building a rock-crawling buggy, but it wasn’t in the budget. The county ROP program provides us with tools, but we need parts to build with. We get some donations, but it’s not enough.”
Dorr, who has been teaching at Liberty for five years, thought a car show would be the ideal fundraiser to get the club on its feet, but first he and the students needed to get the word out – and the money to promote it.
Dorr tasked his students with cleaning up the auto shop, which had been packed with clutter and scrap metal for years. Over the course of four months, the students helped clean out all the junk. But rather than throw everything away, Dorr recycled the nearly eight tons of scrap metal for a profit of about $1,500, enough to print up flyers and purchase a banner to help promote the car show. He still has about 1,000 pounds of aluminum to recycle, which will also help the fundraising effort.
Dorr said he’d like to attract approximately 100 automobiles to the show. Registration is $20 in advance or $30 the day of the event. There is no theme. Cars, trucks, motorcycles and even boats are welcome. “If it’s shiny and you want to show it off, you’re welcome at our show,” Dorr said. “We’re also looking for vendors.”
Awards, to be custom-made by the ROP students, will be handed out at the end of the event, which runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Liberty High School is located at 850 Second St. in Brentwood.
Dorr hopes the funds generated by the car show will enable the car club to jumpstart a project at the beginning of the next school year. “They can do whatever they want,” Dorr said. “It’s their club, so they can use the money to build a rock crawler like we talked about earlier this year, or they may decide to do something completely different. The important thing is for them to find a project they’re passionate about.”
For more information about the car show, call Dorr at 559-977-0181.