‘Monster’ event to collect toys for children

Published 4 December 2017

Monster truck rides and an ATV stunt show will put a fun twist on a classic Christmas event — and all for a good cause.

Greg Price, co-director of Christmas 4 Kids in Searcy, said the event has been held annually for more than 20 years.

“Our team has been involved for three years doing an event to draw more attention and toys,” he said.

“My wife, Debbie Price, and I own AMMP

Motorsports, which stands for Arkansas Mud and Monsters Productions. We travel all over the Southern states doing monster truck shows, mud races, derbies and ATV shows, so we are used to the production side. This is our way of giving back to our community.”

Greg Price said Christmas 4 Kids will take place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at 800 Truman Baker Drive in Searcy, across from Sunrise Yamaha.

Activities will include bounce houses, a motorcycle ride, monster truck rides, a power-wheels derby, an ATV stunt show, a bike show and a car show.

Admission is free with a toy donation per person, he said, and the purpose of the event is to give back to White County children in need.

“What makes it unique is we are giving the people who choose to help with a toy donation a show for the whole family, including monster truck rides,” he said.

Price said all toy donations will remain in White County.

“At this time, recipients are chosen with the help of all the White County schools,” he said.

The event will kick off at 11 a.m. with a motorcycle ride, followed by an opening prayer and the national anthem at noon.

Monster truck rides, live music and photos with Santa will begin at 12:30 p.m., he said.

“We have a unique background for Santa. We have two big 4x4 trucks on top of cars,” he said.

An ATV race will take place at 1 p.m.; UTV rides and photos with Santa at 1:30 p.m.; monster truck rides at 2 p.m.; a power wheels derby and photos with Santa at 2:30; an ATV stunt show and UTV rides at 3 p.m.; and monster truck rides, photos with Santa, and an awards ceremony at 4 p.m., Price said.

“We will give a trophy to the motorcycle or car that collects the most money to be donated on the day of the event. One trophy to each group, one for motorcycles and one for automobiles, will be given to Best in Show,” he said.

Price said food vendors will sell meals at the event.

Door prizes, valued at $25 or more, will also be given out, he said.

Price said core sponsors include AMMP Motorsports, Sunrise Motorsports, Chase Mobile Home Service, All American Motors and Arkansas Installation Service.

Sondra Bloesch, event coordinator and volunteer, said the event brings the community together for a good cause.

“I’m excited about seeing all the people come together to help kids have a great Christmas, and for the stunt show. I think people will be excited to see that, and it will draw attention to the event,” she said.

Giving back is something Bloesch said she is passionate about.

“As a little girl, I saw my mom struggle as a single mom trying to provide, and how sad it made her. So I want to be able to help those who need the help,” she said.

Bloesch said Judy Hicks works hard on Christmas 4 Kids donations throughout the year, and Dusty Betts helps with entertainment and sponsors.

“Thundering Grace is bringing barbecue sandwiches, selling them for $5 and donating all the money back to Christmas 4 Kids. The Punishers are helping with parking, directing traffic and patrolling the grounds for us. They are made up of the local police, fire department EMS and military — a bunch of great guys who have helped out with a lot of events. They are also planning the route for the ride,” Bloesch said.

“With all the bad out there, [Christmas 4 Kids] is something good. It makes me feel good inside to do for others and to help out during a hard time of year for some people,”she said.

“We hope the impact is gigantic,” Price said.