Only 20 days into the Third Annual McCarthy 2000 Sales Event, employees for the McCarthy Auto Group already knew they had done something special.
It had nothing to do with trying to reach the goal of selling 2,000 new and used vehicles for the months of July and August.
Seeing the smiles on the faces of Lindsay and Tyler at a Make-A-Wish “Send Off Celebration” on July 20 at McCarthy Chevrolet Olathe was heartwarming.
Karl Kramer, communications director at McCarthy Auto Group, called it a rewarding experience, especially when he asked Lindsay about her upcoming trip to Atlantis in the Bahamas.
“She did her homework,” Kramer said. “She knew from A to Z what there was to do. You could tell by the expression on her face that she couldn’t wait to get there and experience all she was going to experience.”
Lindsay, from Gardner, was born with muscular dystrophy and has used a wheelchair her entire life.
“The people at Make-A-Wish will tell you that while her condition of muscular dystrophy may not change, her attitude and how she approaches life will have a positive impact because of the Wish Trip,” Kramer said. “It has a positive effect on their overall health. It breaks up the day-to-day things that they work through.”
Kramer said McCarthy Auto Group is sponsoring three children.
“In this sales event, we are committed to donating $20,000 to Make-A-Wish of Missouri,” Kramer said. “It will allow us to fulfill three wishes. We have Tyler from Lee’s Summit, who a year ago had a brain tumor and now is 100 percent and in very good health. He got back in June from an E3 summit in Los Angeles, which is an electronics expo.”
The other child who McCarthy Auto Group will sponsor is from Kansas City, and his Wish Trip is to Disney World.
McCarthy Auto Group is going to take proceeds from the sale of each vehicle in July and August and put that in one collective pot, Kramer said. Regardless of whether McCarthy Auto Group reaches 2,000 sales, they will still donate $20,000.
“We are 100 percent committed to making that donation to Make-A-Wish,” Kramer said. “The plan is to continue it in future years if at all possible.”
The McCarthy 2000 event evolved three years ago, Kramer said, because July and August are the months with typically the largest volume of shoppers, mostly because most manufacturers have model year-end sales events going on in July and August.
“Everybody wants the best value, and dealer inventories are in really good shape,” Kramer said.
Last year Kramer said they fell about 100 units shy of their goal. So far this year, sales have been good.
“We expect to meet or exceed that target this year,” Kramer said.
Before the sales event started, Kramer said team members at McCarthy Auto Group wanted to do more than just sell cars.
“Team members within McCarthy had said, ‘We do a lot in the community. This is an awesome 60-day sales event, maybe we should add a philanthropic element to it,’” Kramer said.
“We feel that being part of the communities we serve is not an obligation; it is something we feel is the right thing to do. At our core, McCarthy Auto Group really values the relationships with communities and giving back.”
In the past, Kramer had talked with Angela Brewer, who is the development manager at Make-A-Wish of Missouri.
“I thought of them as we approached this event,” Kramer said. “It made a lot of sense. They provide a list of all the kids that have gone on their wish trip but their trip had not been funded by a sponsor, or there are children waiting to go and they have not had their wish granted or funded.”
By helping out the funding for three wish trips, McCarthy Auto Group made a difference, and it was easy to see on July 20.
“We had some officials from Olathe Chamber of Commerce, several media partners and McCarthy team members,” Kramer said. “We heard from Tyler. We heard from Lindsay. Tyler was excited about what he had a chance to experience and Lindsay had a lot of anticipation to have fun in Atlantis.
“It is very rewarding for us because it is one thing to be a financial contributor to something, but it is something else to be an active contributor.”
If you have a story you would like to see in Making a Difference, email David Boyce at Drive@ksctar.com