On May 18, staff members of the Eastern Kentucky Veterans Center hosted their fifth annual car show, free to the public. This year, in addition to the usual car show, the event featured many new activities.

“This is the first year we’re trying something different,” said Matthew Sabin, the institutional recreation program supervisor at the EKVC. “We’re trying new things. It’s a lot easier to bring the community to this region than it is for me to try and get my veterans out, so we’re trying to find ways to make it more festive for multiple generations.”

The contest was expanded to include trucks and motorcycles in addition to the cars. A variety of games such as volleyball, bean bags, inflatables and water balloon grenades were added to the event’s activities this year. Many community vendors, including the animal shelter, mountain arts association, foster and adoption services and more, were also set up at the event.

“We’re isolated,” said Sabin. “Half the veterans here have no family and many who do (have family) they live far away, so if we create and environment that is worth the long drive they’ll hang out with them longer.”

All proceeds, Sabin said, benefit the veterans.

“Every dollar we raise goes into the Veterans Program Trust fund that allows up to improve the quality of life for the veterans,” said Sabin, explaining that it can be used for trips to movies, shopping for clothes and items and more.

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