ANNE EICKSTADT PHOTO Belvidere Republican
About 60 cars competed for trophies in the 2022 CASA Car Show this year.

“We are serving 75 kids right now with 27 advocates,” said Charlotte Meier, executive director of CASA. “We are aways looking for new advocates. We will have a training session this fall.

“Advocates have to be at least 21-years-of-age, have their own transportation, pass a background check, and take a 30-hour training course. Then the new advocate will be assigned a family. Advocates will meet with their family once a month. Our goal is to make sure that the kids are safe, healthy, and happy.

“We have started an educational program for our CASA kids. We know that during the pandemic, kids struggled. We have a new educational coordinator, Karen Olsen, who can help with school work, flash cards, or whatever they need to catch up or get ahead.

“We are gearing up for Halloween and for Hometown Christmas. We are also seeking new board members”

“This is our sixth annual car show for CASA,” said Dr. Derek Prado, CASA vice-president. “Our show trophies are made for our show alone. You will not find trophies like these anywhere else, so this is the place to be. From a board member’s perspective, it is great to see the community coming together to support CASA.

“We have everything from old, classic Corvettes to brand new Mustangs competing for these very cool trophies. The trophies are made by Mike Loman, Tyler D’Alessandro, and myself. We do all the sand blasting, cleaning, welding, and painting. We have about 60 vehicles here from trucks, jeeps, motorcycles here to compete this year.”

Supporting the Cars for CASA show is a Touch-a-Truck event supported by the Belvidere Police Dept., the Belvidere Fire Dept. Boone County Fire District #2, EMA, Boone County Sheriff’s Dept., Kunes Auto, Loves Park Police Dept., and the Cherry Valley Police Dept. Loves Park and Cherry Valley sent one patrol vehicle each, EMA brought out the air truck (for replenishing fire department air tanks at emergency incidents) and their Decontamination truck (used for cleaning up when having been exposed to chemicals at incidents), the BFD brought Engine #1 as their vintage contribution, and Boone County Fire District 2 brought a fire engine to the event. The Mobile Command Center was the Sheriff’s Dept.’s contribution to community enjoyment and to support CASA.

The Saturday, Sept. 17 Buchanan Street Stroll held its usual attractions. Bands played, beginning with The Rack and the Riddler, and vendors sold their unique products. Pickles the Clown made balloon animals, wands, swords, crowns, and whatever else the kids requested. The Ida Public Library displayed their bookmobile on the corner, food and beverage trucks fed many guests who may or may not have also patronized the brick-and-mortar businesses on Buchanan Street.

Buchanan Street Stroll is a fun outdoor event where we bring live music, food trucks, kid-friendly activities, and vendors of all kinds to downtown Belvidere. Our goal is to show people who stop by for this event what a great community we have. The event began shortly before COVID-19 appeared and interrupted the proceedings. It has come back strong and isas popular as ever.

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