Dads’ backs were aching Monday morning, following the fourth annual Okanagan Dream Rally. (David Venn - Capital News)

Okanagan Dream Rally raises $800,000 in 4th annual event

Event organizers say they’re overwhelmed by community support and generosity

Bernard Avenue was a wonderland for people of all ages on Saturday, Aug. 3.

The Okanagan Dream Rally’s fourth annual event brought hundreds of people to the streets of downtown Kelowna to walk through the cars on display.

“It’s crazy how many people showed up for it,” said Matt August, the owner of August Luxury Motorcars and c0-founder of the August Family Foundation. “(We are) grateful for our community.”

This year’s event raised more than $800,000, which brings the event’s total money raised to approximately $1.6 million in its four years.

August said he was taken aback when they tallied the numbers earlier this morning.

“We had no idea this was happening,” he said, joking about how he thought last year’s total amount raised may have been a fluke.

READ MORE: Okanagan Dream Rally looks to hit over $1M in funding this year

READ MORE: Rally makes dreams come true

Dream Rally surpassed their fundraising goal of $500,000 for the Ronald McDonald House BC and Yukon, and now, the organizers aren’t too sure what to do with the extra cash raised.

August said they are still deciding how to divvy up the overflow of funding.

One driver who participated in the event said that it was an amazing experience to be a part of.

“The support of the city was incredible,” 33-year-old Vancouver philanthropist Kevin Gordon said. “Particularly the amount of people that came out.”

Gordon, who is widely known as the co-founder for Convertus, a startup businesses that offers a wide set of digital solutions-based services to auto dealers across the country, started the Driven Project a year ago, which is similar to the Okanagan Dream Rally.

Operating full time now, Driven Project offers super car rides to children who are suffering from a terminal illness for charity. The startup foundation has expanded to do larger group drives once a month and individual group drives once a week.

Gordon said the Vancouver Police Department are their biggest supporters, shutting down streets in Vancouver and offering escorts throughout the narrow urban streets. They also partner with luxury car brands such as McLaren and Lamborghini.

READ MORE: Blacksmith competition draws crowds to Lake Country vineyard

“(The Dream Rally) has a really similar vision and they really want to do lots of charity work,” Gordon said. “I have a lot of respect for that.”

Gordon is friends with August and said they help each other out for both of their charitable causes.

“It keeps opening up my eyes to what kids are going through sometimes,” August said.

For now, August is appreciative and overwhelmed.

“Our dealership is in shambles; there are cars everywhere,” August said with a laugh. “This is something that will be happening for a long time.”



David Venn
Reporter, Kelowna Capital News
Email me at david.venn@kelownacapnews.com
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