Baumann Auto Group kicked off its fifth annual Baumann Auto Group Big Charity Raffle Friday morning at Berry's Restaurant.
Each of the last four years Baumann has printed raffle tickets for charities in the counties it serves. This year, that includes Huron County since Baumann bought Raceway Pontiac on U.S. 250 last year. The United Fund of Norwalk, Wakeman, and Monroeville joins in the fun this year, Baumann representative Heather More said.
The charities and dealerships sell the tickets. The winner, this year to be drawn on Aug. 18, gets his choice of a brand new Pontiac G6, Chevrolet HHR or Dodge Caliber.
Each charity keeps 100 percent of each $5 ticket it sells. All the money raised by the dealerships gets divided equally among the charities.
So far, the raffle has raised $200,000 for participating charities.
"It's been a huge success," Buck Baumann said. "The heroes in this whole deal are the volunteers," Baumann continued they sell the tickets. After all, part of why they select small, local charities, Baumann said, is because they are based on volunteers and don't spend money on overhead. Between that and the fact that Baumann pays all expenses, if you buy a ticket, "you can feel good that the money is going to someone in need."
Baumann said part of the reason for the raffle is to get Baumann's name out there Baumann sets aside five promotional vehicles for charities to take to their events to help them sell tickets. But, he said, "that's a side benefit," and he pointed out that Baumann makes a lot of contributions no one ever hears about. If this project can do both, if it can be "a good thing for charity and a good thing for Baumann ... it's a home run," he said.
The charities participating this year are: Liberty Center of Fremont, Village House of Fremont, Hospice of Memorial Hospital, First Step of Fremont & Fostoria, Safe Harbor of Sandusky, NAMI of Seneca, Sandusky and Wyandot counties, Ruth Ann's House of Port Clinton, Ottawa Health Department & Home Health, SCAT of Tiffin, Hospice of Tiffin, Easter Seals of Fremont, Back to the Wild, and United Fund of Norwalk, Wakeman and Monroeville. Huron County's United Fund uses the money it raises to fund other charities in the area.
Representatives from 12 of the 13 participating charities enjoyed breakfast with Baumann the last, Mona Rutger from Back to the Wild, is in a rain forest in Costa Rica at the moment, so she didn't make it.