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A six-time Indy car competitor headlines a “Cruise-In for Scouting” on July 25 at the Gilmore Car Museum.

Howard S. “Howdy” Holmes, a former race car driver who competed in six Indianapolis 500 events and was named “Rookie of the Year” in 1979, will be the guest of honor at the event which begins at 5 p.m. on the grounds of North America’s largest auto museum.  Guests will be able to partake of heavy hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar, followed by a program at 6 p.m. and tours of the 400-acre museum.

“We couldn’t have asked for a more appropriate individual to headline this first-of-its-kind gathering,” said T.R. Shaw, head of the Cruise-In for Scouting” planning committee.  “Howdy has a passion for cars and is equally as passionate about the programs and services Scouting offers for youth in Calhoun and Kalamazoo counties.”

All proceeds from the event will be used to fund programs and services for youth served by the Southern Shores Field Service Council, one of four field service councils managed by the Michigan Crossroads Council, Boy Scouts of America.

In addition to his career as a race car driver, Holmes also is president  and CEO of Chelsea Milling Company best known for its “JIFFY” mix brand, and was the recipient 2016 recipient of the Southern Shores Field Service Council’s Distinguished Citizen Award.

As he goes about his daily life, Holmes said he sees the need for the values and ideals that Scouting instills in its youth.

“Boy Scouting has created an environment which demonstrates and teaches young boys a value system and it is often the case, more recently than not, that there aren’t a lot of other sources to learn those values,” he said.  “With the fragmentation of the family unit these days a lot of things are left out.”

For many youth, he said, Scouting provides the inclusiveness and camaraderie that other extracurricular activities don’t.

“The need for camaraderie and to feel like you’re part of a team and to feel a part of something are significant things in a young guy’s life and unlike sports where you may not make the team, Scouting welcomes everybody,” Holmes said.

Although Holmes said he doesn’t have specific memories of his time as a Boy Scout, he remembers it as being a positive experience that gave him the values he needed to figure things out at a young age.

“I know if I need to I can take two rocks and create a spark which is something I can directly relate back to being a Boy Scout,” Holmes said.

In addition to leading the company founded by his family in 1901, Holmes is also is an author, journalist, and public speaker.

To register for the event, click here.  Registrations are due by July 20.

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