Toyota donates during fundraiser at fairgrounds

A barbecue fundraiser brought in more than just money last weekend.

Toyota started its 100 Cars for Good, a giveaway of 100 cars to 100 nonprofits over the course of 100 days, at the OC BBQ and Music Festival at the Orange County Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa.

The first recipient in the national giveaway was the Kristie's Foundation, which received a Prius V during the festival, which is the Anaheim-based foundation's annual fundraiser. It was selected May 30.

Through Aug. 21, Toyota will profile five nonprofits daily on its Facebook page, where users can vote for the organization they think can do the most good with a Toyota vehicle, according to a press release.

The four runners-up will each receive a $1,000 cash grant.

The nonprofits serve a broad range of community needs, including animal welfare, education, veterans' affairs and safety.

"Toyota created the 100 Cars for Good program because we appreciate what a big difference a new car or truck can make for organizations working to improve lives and strengthen communities across America," Jim Lentz, president and chief executive of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. Inc., said in a prepared statement. "It's been very gratifying to put the public in the driver's seat to select the winning organizations."

Laurie Kotas started Kristie's Foundation after she lost her daughter to leukemia and had little support during her daughter's final days, according to the release. With the goal of changing that situation for other families, Kristie's Foundation hopes to build Kristie's Place, which would be the first children's end-of-life care facility in the nation.

Other Orange County nonprofits in Toyota's program include Costa Mesa-based Orange County Coastkeeper, Garden Grove-based St. Anselm's Cross Cultural Community Center, Irvine-based Corazon De Vida Foundation and San Juan Capistrano-based the Ecology Center. For more information or to vote, visit

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