Elkhart Donors Boost Hall of Fame’s Fund Drive
Contributions from two Elkhart, Ind., businessmen totaling $15,000 today (July 6) have pushed the RV/MH Hall of Fame closer to its goal of raising $100,000 by the end of August for the “Ingram Family’s Matching Challenge,” reports Darryl Searer, president of the RV/MH Heritage Foundation Inc.’s Hall of Fame.
One of the donations, for $10,000, was from former Beck Industries President Roy Beck, whose company manufactured frames for both the recreational vehicle and manufactured housing sectors. Beck contributed another $2,000 toward the Hall’s upcoming golf outing and induction dinner.
The other, for $5,000, came from ex-Thor Industries Inc. executive Bill Fenech.
In the big picture, the Hall, located off the Indiana Toll Road on the north side of the RV-building center of Elkhart, apparently continues to gain support and and dig itself out of a financial hole that once threatened the future of the unique industry shrine housing rental facilities, meeting rooms, a library, the Hall itself and a museum full of vintage units.
“This puts us at just about $80,000 with approximately $20,000 to go until the end of August,” Searer told RVBUSINESS.COM, adding that a hundred percent of the tax-deductible challenge contributions goes toward paying down the Hall’s loan at 1st Source Bank.
Searer says the fund drive got yet another boost recently from Keystone Automotive Products, the new parent of NTP Distribution Inc., Wilsonville, Ore., which is supporting the Hall of Fame in a month-long promotion through its RV and auto parts and accessories dealers. On behalf of dealers purchasing a certain amount of product, Keystone is purchasing bricks in the Hall’s “Walk of Fame” Brick Program with dealers’ names engraved on them.
More “bricks” were sold in June than in all of last year, adds Searer, chairman of Elkhart, Ind.-based supplier Ultra-Fab Products Inc.
Meanwhile, ticket sales for the Aug. 6 induction dinner are on track and a crowd of between 400 and 500 is expected. “A lot of people have made $100, $200 contributions,” said Searer. “I am amazed how many people have stepped up to that challenge. Had the Hall of Fame not survived, it would have given a black eye to the industry. People are starting to realize that and are giving back to an industry that has given them a pretty good livelihood.”
Contributions toward the Ingram family’s matching $100,000 challenge grant can be made through the Hall’s secure website, www.rvmhhalloffame.org, or by mail, phone or fax. Checks or money orders are payable to the RV/MH Hall of Fame, Ingram Challenge RV/MH Hall of Fame, 21565 Executive Parkway, Elkhart IN 46514. Phone: (574) 293-1191.