Perris elected officials turned out July 4 at the Perris Auto Speedway to celebrate Independence Day and show support for the race track’s continuing efforts to raise money for cancer research and treatments.
For the last eight years, track promoter Don Kazarian has organized fundraising efforts during the racing season. Much of the money is collected in $1 and $2 donations by drivers who walk through the stands carrying their racing helmets during intermissions and Kazarian makes annual contributions as well.
This July 4, Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and members of the City Council turned out to thank Kazarian and the fans for collecting $100,000 since their efforts began.
During remarks in front of a near sellout crowd, Kazarian said his war against cancer is personal. He’s lost three dear friends to the disease and their fight with cancer is something he thinks about all the time. He said 99 percent of the money collected at the PAS goes
directly to cancer research and cures. He thanked the City of Perris
for its support, which includes sponsoring a July 4 fireworks
spectacular and sky concert.
“I thank the City of Perris for its support,” Kazarian said. “I absolutely love the City of Perris.”
Perris Valley resident Bob McGinty, a three-time cancer survivor, accepted a $10,000 check on behalf of the American Cancer Society. Support from the City of Perris and benefactors like the PAS keep up the spirit of those battling the disease.
“Thanks for your support and commitment,” McGinty said. “It does make a difference.”
Mayor Busch thanked the race fans and community for supporting the American Cancer Society and wished everyone a happy July 4. The City sponsors the fireworks display as a way to prevent as a way to provide a “safe and sane” celebration and prevent unsupervised fireworks explosions. Perris residents get in free to the speedway on July 4.
“We’ve partnered with the speedway for many years on this display,” Busch said. “We pay for the fireworks—Don gets to light them!”
Perris City Councilman Al Landers, a longtime supporter of the American Cancer Society, said he was pleased to support the fundraising effort. He called Kazarian’s efforts to fight cancer.
“He’s always giving back to the community,” Landers said. “He’s a great businessman and friend to the City. I appreciate the opportunity to come out to this great venue on July 4 to celebrate our freedoms, which have been brought at a high cost paid by our veterans. Many people have sacrificed to secure the freedoms we enjoy today.”
Mayor Pro-Tem Rita Rogers echoed those sentiments, saying that the long-standing fundraising program represents “a phenomenal effort by outstanding community representatives.” She expressed her sentiments about the Fourth of July succinctly: “God Bless the USA!”
City Councilman Mark Yarbrough, a PAS sponsor, car owner and driver, thanked the crowd for their support and patriotism, saying: “This is the most important night in our country. Thank you for coming out to our playground.”
City Councilman Julio Rodriguez said he was delighted to attend the fireworks show and racing program.
“I love it,” he said. “It’s a great way to enjoy a safe and sane Independence Day.”