ECHO Car Show Looking to flaunt your car this February? Then why not take part in the First Annual Charity Car Show taking place at Lifestyles Family Fitness, helping locally-known charity Emergency Care Help Organization (ECHO) in the process.
Taking place on Saturday, February 21, at Lifestyles, located at 623 Oakfield Dr. in Brandon, car enthusiasts, alongside their family and friends, are invited to present their beloved vehicles amongst a smorgasbord of classic and custom cars from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Cars spanning the eras of 1900 to today will be exhibited as well as specialty and custom models. A variety of vendors, a disc jockey and possibly a radio station will be onsite as well as Valrico’s Kids Company and other performers. Judging of the cars will take place at 1:30 p.m. and raffles and door prizes will also be presented.
Having come up with the idea, ECHO Board member Bob Fiske, an aficionado of antique cars himself, says, “This is really the first attempt to set the base for a car show – we’re hoping to fill the lot,” with an estimated 80 cars expected.
If you are interested, call Fiske at 651-5141 or register online at A registration fee of $15 is encouraged, made payable to ECHO. Those participating in the car show are asked to arrive between 9-10 a.m. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you would like to be involved with the event as a benefactor, sponsorships of $100-$1,000 are being welcomed.
With hopes of $15,000 being raised, ECHO continues to serve the greater Brandon area through food and clothing assistance as well as referrals. Having helped 10,610 residents in 2008, ECHO Executive Director Stacey Efaw mentions, “ECHO has experienced a 15 percent increase in demand for services over the last year and expects a higher increase in demand this upcoming year.” Even with donations and food drives, including November’s Feed the Bay initiative whereat ECHO accumulated 60,000 lbs. of food, Efaw expects the organization’s reserves to hold out only until February.
Helped by approximately 90 volunteers weekly, ECHO has been a place of refuge for those in need since 1987. Located at 507 N. Parsons Ave. in Brandon, the facility welcomes volunteers and donations through the hours of 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Monetary donations are also welcome, going towards the purchase of perishable food items by ECHO at a discounted rate. Those who would like to help can mail donations to ECHO or donate online at

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Carisa is a Senior News Reporter and Assistant Editor at the Osprey Observer. When she's not at work, she continues to write, working on future projects; hangs out with friends and family, her best friend (aka her husband) and her four dogs.