Ford raises $2,600 for music boosters


Brian Balika, of DeKalb, prepares to test drive a Ford Focus Wednesday in the parking lot of DeKalb High School, 501 W. Dresser Road. Ford Motor Company donated $20 per test drive to DeKalb High School’s music programs.

By Ryan Nickel

Brad Manning Ford raised $2,600 with 130 participants for the DeKalb High School music boosters during their Drive 4 UR School fundraiser.

This is the second year DeKalb High School, 501 W. Dresser Road, had an event for Drive 4 UR School to raise money for its music boosters. Last year it raised about $2,660 with 133 participants. Suzy Changnon, an instructional assistant at DeKalb High School, said the money from the fundraiser will go toward field trips, instruments and band uniforms.

During the fundraiser, Brad Manning Ford, 402 Manning Drive, donated $20 for every participant who volunteered to test drive cars. The event ran from 12:30 to 4 p.m. Wednesday in the parking lot of DeKalb High School, and Brad Manning Ford had several cars for people to test drive. Participants were able to test drive a car of their choice, after which they filled out a survey about their driving experience.

Suzy Changnon, an instructional assistant at DeKalb High School, helped run the event along with the school’s music and national honor society students. Changnon said it’s something DeKalb High School hopes to do every year during spring.

“We’d just like to get more folks from the community and NIU to come out to support our event next year,” Changnon said. “Perhaps Greek organizations and other service groups to drive because it doesn’t take a lot of time and it’s fun.”

Ben Manning, sales manager for Brad Manning Ford, took part to sponsor Ford as well as the event for the music boosters.

“It’s a great community event for the music boosters,” Manning said. “It’s a lot easier than handing out candy bars, and all people have to do is test drive cars and raise money for a good cause.”

Changnon’ son, Ben Changnon, who volunteered at the event, said his experience at the fundraiser went well.

“I loved helping set things up and making sure everything ran smoothly,” Ben Changnon said. “Not only that, but actually seeing efforts being reciprocated [from the people who attended] was nice.

“It’s a really fun and painless service project.”