Members of a local car club hope their passion projects will help the community’s farmworkers weather the unknown during the coronavirus pandemic.
Watsonville Riders on Saturday will host the Farmworker Relief Cruise in downtown Watsonville from 5-7pm. The automobile showcase will serve as a fundraiser for the Center for Farmworker Families, a local nonprofit that helps connect agricultural workers to various resources.
It will be the second time Watsonville Riders, a longstanding lowrider car club, has organized a cruise down Watsonville’s Main Street during the pandemic. The first was a month ago, according to club President Moe Haro. Roughly 100 cars rolled through the historic corridor.
Since then, Haro says, other cruises have been organized in Hollister and Salinas by using their blueprint.
“It was great,” Haro says of the first cruise. “Everybody got out of their house and cruised …. It was a good, safe way to blow off some steam during this pandemic.”
All social distancing rules apply for the redux, Haro says. There will be no social gathering or group parking, and face coverings are required when making monetary donations at the drop-off point on Southern Circle near Yesy’s Restaurant.
“It’s a cruise,” he says. “Not a hangout.”
Haro says he expects anywhere from 150-200 cars from various clubs in the 831 area code to visit Watsonville and support the farmworker community. Every type of car is welcome, he says.
“It’s not just lowriders,” he says. “Anyone with a cool car that shares our passion and wants to help is welcome to come cruise.”
Before Covid-19 started its spread, Watsonville Riders held small monthly cruises to celebrate their classic cars and the hours of work they put into them. Seeing an opportunity to turn their passion into a tool to help their community, Haro says they jumped at the opportunity no questions asked.
“Sometimes we get a bad rep,” Haro says. “We want to show everyone we’re helping our community just like everyone else is. We want people to know cruising is not a crime. We care about our community and we want to make a difference.”
For information on how to participate, visit the Watsonville Riders Facebook page.