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Fundraisers roll through

Tuesday, 13th April, 2010

* Mayor of Orange City Council and chief rally organiser John Davis. * Mayor of Orange City Council and chief rally organiser John Davis.

By Gina Wilson

A cavalcade of decorated cars rolled through town yesterday on an epic 2,200 kilometre fundraising journey.

Kicked off by the Governor of NSW, Marie Bashir, last Friday in Orange, the 32 car rally is raising money for a new cancer care centre, the Carewest Lodge, in Orange. Organiser John Davis, who also happens to be the mayor of the Orange City Council, said building of the 20 unit lodge was underway with $2.5 million in grants given.

Mr Davis said the lodge would be available to those from outside Sydney who need to travel to Orange for cancer services. He said with two new radiotherapy bunkers pinpointed for development in Orange, the number of people needing the facility would rise. Now in its second year, the "Crusin' Along" fundraiser has doubled in size and is staring down the barrel of raising more than $100,000.

"Yes, well it's 32 cars this year and last year it was 16/17," Mr Davis said. "We reckon we'll raise in excess of $100,000 this year. "It's not necessarily the money, it's making people aware of the Carewest Lodge."

He said there had been a strong response from communities along the way."It's overwhelming," he said."It's pretty tough out there but school kids are giving a donation of 20 cents, $20 or even $50 and that's just as important as donations of $1,000."It's the thought that counts." The cars range from 1963 model two-wheeldrives to 2009 fourwheel- drives with the 85 drivers and crew just as varied.

"We have people from aged one to more mature," Mr Davis said adding the little ones were "having the time of their lives". The contingent included a father and son team and three generations of the one family. The cars had a twoday night stop in the city and have already passed through Grenfell, Hillston and Pooncarie.

The troop is on its way to White Cliffs today before visiting Bourke, Warren and Forbes. The rally will finish in Orange on Saturday.

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