Road Kings of Burbank Awards $10,000 to Local Nonprofits

(Photos by David Laurell) - Burbank Historical Society Museum President Carey Briggs receiving a check from Bruce Borst and Karen Arellano on behalf of the Road Kings of Burbank.

First published in the Sept. 24 print issue of the Burbank Leader.

The Burbank Police Foundation’s mission is to cultivate a solid partnership between the Burbank Police Department and the residents, businesses and institutions it serves in order to enrich the community and enhance police services.
The mission of the Boys & Girls Club of Burbank and Greater East Valley is to inspire and enable all young people to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens.
The Burbank Temporary Aid Center operates under the mission to help those in need to meet the short-term needs for food and basic services necessary and to create a community where the poor, working poor and homeless are able to access the resources they need to live with dignity and become as self-sufficient as possible.
As for the mission adopted by the Burbank Historical Society Burbank, it collects, preserves and shares the history of our community.
This past week, the Road Kings of Burbank lived up to their mission to promote and foster automotive interests, support automotive education in local schools and assist and help fund community and charitable organizations by awarding $10,000 to the four aforementioned nonprofit groups.
Bruce Borst, who serves as the president of the classic car club, which is currently celebrating its 70th anniversary, welcomed Road Kings members and special guests to last week’s event that took place at the Burbank Elks Lodge.
Along with Carey Briggs, who is president of the Burbank Historical Society Museum, Tracey Ban and Arp Ineh, who represented the Boys & Girls Club, Burbank Temporary Aid Center CEO Barbara Howell, and Burbank Police Foundation board members Brendan Turner and Cristina Spratt, others in attendance included Burbank Police Department Captains J.J. Puglisi and Adam Cornils with Officer Joseph Nuñez and his canine partner Officer Rosco.

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With each individual group receiving $2,500, longtime Road Kings member and past-President Don Baldaseroni explained that the funds they make available are raised throughout the year from the organization’s car shows and numerous events.
“We have provided somewhere in the neighborhood on half-a-million dollars to various nonprofits over the years, including the automotive departments of Burbank’s high schools,” Baldaseroni said prior to the awarding of checks.
“This year, along with the four checks we will present tonight, we also made a contribution to the Leadership Burbank project that renovated the mess kitchen at the Veterans of Foreign Wars hall,” Baldaseroni added.
While each recipient expressed their gratefulness to the Road Kings as they accepted their checks, it was Howell who stirred emotions in telling the assemblage of the work her organization does for the vulnerable and food insecure residents of our community.
“While homelessness is so much more visible outside of Burbank, what people don’t see here are those who are not homeless — never been homeless — but are doing all they can to hold on and not become homeless,” Howell explained.
“We serve many elderly residents who are on a fixed income and are in need of help with groceries, rent or paying their utilities,” Howell told the car enthusiasts. “They are people most Burbankers will never know or come in contact with, but who are grateful for [what you do] on the front end to make it possible for us to help them on the back end.”
The next event the Road Kings are gearing up for is the Magnolia Park Merchants Association’s 32nd annual Holiday in the Park. After a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, this always festive evening that ushers in the holiday season will see 75 stores joining in on the celebration that will stretch nine blocks from Hollywood Way to Florence Street.
The event, which will feature a display of classic cars owned by Road Kings members, will take place from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 18.

DAVID LAURELL may be reached by email at dlaurell@aol.com or (818) 563-1007.