Blood, Sweat, and Gears

One always wonders what goes into making a charity event so successful. For Brevard Alzheimer’s Foundation’s Alz BBQ & Car Drawing there is a year round effort of blood, sweat and gears.  For eighteen years, AJ Hiers has been partnering with BAFI to bring recognition and support to a great cause.

Eighteen years ago the Brevard Alzheimer’s Foundation paid AJ Hiers of Boniface-Hiers Automotive Group a visit with an idea for a benefit with a car drawing. Hiers, who was raised in Brevard County felt compelled to jump head first into what would become one of the most successful charity events on the Space Coast. And it all starts with his own tool box. In 1998 Hiers decided that the event needed a boost, so instead of giving away a new car, Hiers decided to raffle off his own collector’s item, a 1967 Dodge Coronet, ticket sales went up immediately. Since then Hiers and BAFI have been raffling off some of the most collectable cars in the US, many of which Hiers reconstructs himself. “This event is a 24/7, 365 day collaboration, once they winner is drawn, we start work on next year’s car” explained Heirs “I was raised in Brevard, and to give back to a community that has given me so much is such a privilege.”

Clockwise from top:NASCAR Legend Geoff Bodine, AJ Hiers, and Executive Director of BAFI, Chris Stagman

And the event is one to write home about! Last year almost 2,000 people showed up to watch the live drawing. This year should be no different, at $25 a ticket you get all the BBQ you can handle, free soda, water and beer, and of course the chance to nab an award winning 1970 Dodge Coronet Super Bee (for all us non-muscle heads that’s a super-sweet car that will get a lot of ohh’s and ahh’s).

18th Annual Alz Barbeque and Car Drawing:

To benefit families impacted by Alzheimer’s Disease

6 p.m. –  8 p.m., Saturday May 21, 2011

Wickham Park Pavilion Melbourne


1970 Dodge Coronet Super Bee Specs (just in case you need to impress someone)

440 Six Pack

18 Spline Hemi 4 Speed

Dana 60 Trackpack Rear End

“Despite a down economy last year, we were able to raise $230,000 for the Brevard Alzheimer’s Foundation at the ALZBBQ and Car Drawing.  All the money that we raise through fundraisers and donations stay right here in Brevard County to help local elders in need of services.  It is a common misconception that BAFI is an organization that deals strictly with Alzheimer’s or dementia, and this couldn’t be more wrong.  Our vision is that all elders and caregivers will be safe and healthy while remaining at home.  We do this through the use of daycare, transportation services, and a nursing home diversion program. We also pride ourselves on not turning anyone away based on their financial situation.  The Brevard Alzheimer’s Foundation would not be able to hold up to that if it was not for the overwhelming support of our local community.” – Derek Williams, Director of Communications Brevard Alzheimer’s Foundation