The Centralia Police Department is gearing up for an annual truck raffle to raise money for its holiday charity for local children.
This will be the fourth year of using a truck raffle as the primary fundraiser for the Night Out With Santa, said Centralia Police Officer Ruben Ramirez.
Every holiday season, officers from the Centralia Police Department take the money raised from the raffle and use it to buy local children Christmas presents. All of the youths chosen for participation in the program likely would not have Christmas presents otherwise.
After buying and wrapping the presents, the police have a Christmas party where the children receive presents from Santa and have dinner with the officers.
It is an opportunity for them to have a positive interaction with police, he said.
The truck raffle process takes about a year, he said. The Centralia Police Association buys the truck from Community First Auto Center, which pays for half of it.
This year, the raffle is for a four-wheel drive, Ford F250 with an extended cab, Ramirez said. Several local automotive businesses have donated time and equipment to improving the truck.
Last year, the raffle for the Chevrolet truck raised about $3,800, he said. The Montana man who won the raffle had bought one ticket at a car show He later said he did not need the truck and said they could auction it off and split the money.
Ramirez said he expects it will sell for $8,000 when it goes to auction later this month.
People interested in purchasing raffle tickets for this year’s raffle can do so at Community First Auto Center in Chehalis.
For more information, or to view a calendar of events where the raffle tickets will be available, visit the Facebook page “Cpd-Cfac Dream Truck Raffle.”