AZTEC — It's time to rev your engines for San Juan County youth. The Aztec Boys & Girls Club's launches its largest fundraiser, the 14th annual Harley Raffle on Thursday.
Organizers sweetened the pot this year with more chances to win some of seven 2013 Harley-Davidson motorcycles and hefty cash prizes.
“We are really excited,” said Erin Collins, executive director of the Aztec chapter. “This year we are going to hold early bird drawings to give away one new Harley when 1,000 tickets are sold, another when 2,000 tickets are sold, and a third when 3,000 tickets are sold.”
All tickets, including the winning three, will go back into the final drawing for one of the remaining four Harleys. The drawing will be held March 9 at the Hiway Grill.
That's right, Easy Rider. One ticket-holder could land in hog heaven and win more than one Harley.
Proceeds from the raffle go to support programs and activities at the Aztec Boys & Girls Club.
“The raffle is one of the main reasons we are able to keep our doors open,” Collins said. “We rely on donations and fundraisers to maintain our $10 per year membership fee and fund all the programs we run at our main location and our Teen Center.”
Programs at the Boys & Girls Club all adhere to the three tenets of the organization: to prepare kids for academic success, build character and leadership skills and promote a healthy lifestyle.
“Our summer program is our largest, promoting everything from cultural awareness to making physics fun,” Collins said. “Forty-nine out of 50 days, we are out and about around the community and to farther reaches like Mesa Verde in Colorado or trips to Albuquerque. For many of our kids, these trips represent the first time they've left San Juan County.”
Reaching beyond San Juan County also applies to ticket sales. To boost funding for its critical programs, the raffle will reward supporters who “like” or follow the club on social media.
“We will also give away $1,000 in cash to our Facebook and Twitter followers at four drawings — Dec. 1, Jan. 2, Feb. 1, and March 1,” Collins said.
Treasurer Mike J. Paschall sees the popularity of the event as an endorsement of the organization's positive work done on behalf of local kids. “We spend our money wisely,” he said. “So we can support our young people with positive experiences that will benefit them all their lives,” he said.
Tickets for the annual Harley Raffle go on sale Thursday and cost $100 each or three for $250. You can purchase the tickets the club, 311 S. Ash St., at the Harley Davidson Store, 6520 E. Main St., by calling (505) 334-8861. You can also buy them online at the Boys & Girls Club website, aztecbg-club.com.