“This is just like Starsky and Hutch,” Johnston Mayor Joseph Polisena said before climbing in to a 1969 Camaro Rally Sport that was parked outside Town Hall Monday. Beside him, Johnston Police Chief Richard S. Tamburini admired the vehicle, owned by George Arakelian and his wife Gina Sabitoni-Arakelian.
The Arakelians, with the help of the town and Johnston Police, will hold their second annual JPD Explorers Post 405 Car and Bike Show on Sunday at War Memorial Park.
Sabitoni-Arakelian hopes this year’s event will be, “much bigger and better than last year.”
“And it better not rain,” she said.
After getting rained out twice last summer, the Explorers Post 405 Car Show was held on another overcast, rainy day, keeping the attendance down. The forecast for this Sunday is sunny skies and warm temperatures in the 80s.
“I’ve ordered lots of sun for Sunday,” Polisena told George Arakelian, who brought his prized Camaro to Town Hall for Monday’s final wrap-up meeting. “This show is important ... for a number of reasons.”
Proceeds from the show are used to defray operating expenses incurred by the Explorers Post 405, which is under the direction of the Johnston Police Department and is an arm of the Narragansett Council of Boy Scouts.
Unlike last year, the Car Show will include a Motorcycle Run as well as food booths, music, a dunk tank, balloon making, a bounce house and more fun for children and adults.
“We’ve incorporated the bike run into this year’s show. It should be quite an interesting day,” Sabitoni-Arakelian said.
Sunday’s schedule begins with registration for both the car show and bike run at 9 a.m. The motorcycle run will take off at approximately 10:30 and return to Johnston War Memorial Park between noon and 12:30 p.m. Registration is $10 per vehicle and a canned good.
“We’re also hoping to help the Johnston Community Food Bank with non-perishable items,” Sabitoni-Arakelian explained. “The Police Explorers perform all sorts of important duties throughout the year like shoveling snow for seniors and doing parking lot duties for different events. Everyone connected with the Post is hoping people will bring a canned good to help another very, very important organization in our town.”
She says the price of admission is well worth it, given the entertainment and activities planned.
“We’ll have plenty of food and there will be lots of fun things to do as well,” she said. “We’ll have raffles ... we’ve even got an illusionist coming to perform.”
Trophies will be awarded to all first, second and third place winners in various categories and there will be a special Mayor’s Trophy, Chief of Police Trophy, Explorer’s Choice Award as well as trophies for the Best Paint and Best of the Show.
Vendor spacing, which will be 10 feet by 10 feet, is priced at $50, as is the trophy sponsorships. Judging of those vehicles at the car show will take place during the bike run and a special awards ceremony will be held upon completion of the motorcycle run.
“Please join us for a fun-filled family event,” said Gina Sabitoni-Arakelian. “And just in case it rains, we’ve got a rain date of Sunday, Aug. 19.”
Anyone car owners or motorcycle enthusiasts who’d like to pre-register should call George Arakelian, who owns A Custom Car Stereo Center at 946-0010 or his wife at 499-1317. Interested parties may also contact Johnston Police Captain Marc A. Boisvert at JPD headquarters at 231-4210 ext. 3138.