The 3 year old board just completed the 3rd Annual Charanga Derby and raised $33,000 pesos for Casa Hogar, the home for the elderly. I recently sat down with Santiago Ruiz , committee chairman, who explained that they were so happy with the turn out and the money raised. This is the only fund raiser Casa Hogar does.
The event which was held April 14th here in Puerto Peñasco, consisted of 33 enteries. The event drew nearly 1200 people who watched and cheered on the home made derby cars. This is the Mexican version of the popular “Soap Box Derby” held in the USA every year. As you will see from the photos, they came in all shapes and sizes. The event is held every year on the hill that leads to the Mirador area of Rocky Point. When the 1st event was held, they had about 200 people watching and last year about 500. It is a mix of local families and tourists that either are visiting or live here full time. This year there were so many people, that they lined both sides of the hill and street below. Bleachers were set up along with a stage for the local bands which consisted of young musicians who did a great job. Prior to the race starting, they had a “car show” of all the entrants and the drivers at 2:00 p.m.. At 4:30 the team members began to push the cars up the hill and then waited for their turn to descend. It is amazing how fast those little cars can travel. About 3/4 of the way or near to the finish line there is a ramp that they have to go over. Amazingly enough everyone took the ramp head on. They did have a second ramp 1/2 way down the hill but it was removed after the 2nd driver went over it, as it was not in a good position and safety is always a factor here not only form the drivers but the spectators as well.
In addition to the teams and spectators, the event had over 50 volunteers who had to keep the people off the street. That job was a challenge, as everyone wants to be in front. They lined the street on both sides with straw bales and fencing to make sure everyone is safe. Santiago Ruiz stated that next year they will have to have more straw bales and security fencing to keep the event safe.
There were trophies given for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place as well as receiving gift certificates from local merchants, condos, hotels, restaurants and bars.
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