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New Stanford athletic department policy leaves fundraiser homeless

The Palo Alto Concours d’Elegance, a summer car show that raises money for local charities, is looking for a new home after hosting their annual event at Stanford for the past 38 years. The change comes on the heels of a new University policy regarding use of practice fields.

The Concours d’Elegance, hosted by the Palo Alto Host Lions Club, has showcased vintage, exotic and sports cars every June for 47 years. According to the Palo Alto Daily News, the event has raised over $1.78 million for 41 charities over that time span.

Proceeds from the car show also supported two Stanford-based charities: the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital and a University scholarship fund for a local student-athlete.

Organizers of the event were informed in September by deputy athletic director Ray Purpur that Stanford would not make its fields available next year. After surveying 50 sites from Redwood City to Santa Clara over the last month, the car show is still looking for a venue.

Without a new location to host their event, the longtime fundraiser will “probably close their doors,” according to a press release by Concours executive director Christine Cheshire.

However, plans for the 2013 event continue despite the ongoing search for a new home. The organizing committee hopes to have finalized a venue by the time invitations need to be mailed out.

“An effort is underway to preserve this longstanding Silicon Valley tradition,” said Concours spokeswoman Valerie Foster to the Palo Alto Daily News.

– Edward Ngai