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Get Your Motor Running

Michael J. Badolato Shares His Love of Classic Cars for the Benefit of the Community

“I have a passion for cars and love to take my classic 1978 Corvette to car shows whenever I have the chance,” says Michael J. Badolato, co-owner of Gallaway & Crane Funeral Home in Basking Ridge. “My daughter Isla Rose was born 2019, and I knew before she turned one that she shared my love for cars.” 

It got him thinking about how other families in the community love classic cars and even if they did not own one, they would delight in experiencing them. In 2021, he launched what has become an annual car show at the funeral home. “Isla absolutely loved it,” he says.

This June, he expects about 150 cars — a treat for other area dads who will enjoy reliving their youth and sharing their love of classic rides with their own children. 

As a local business owner, Badolato likes to give back to the community. He donates all proceeds from the event to Heartworks in Bernardsville, which is committed to replicating and sustaining the kindness and connection witnessed in the wake of September 11, 2001. The organization rallies community members to help bring hope to people experiencing acute needs from unexpected life situations such as a chronic illness, injury, a natural disaster or grief.

“I am proud to say that the car show grows larger each year,” Badolato says. “The experience has been extremely rewarding for me. I love sharing this hobby with my daughter and being able to give back to the community.”

The 2023 Car Show is on June 11, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at 101 S. Finley Ave., Basking Ridge. The rain date is June 18. Learn more at

Businesses featured in this article