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The Dream Ride Experience

The annual event features high-end autos and makes Special Olympic athletes the stars of the show

Article by Eileen M.McNamara

Photography by Clem Kasinskas / Bozzuto Media

Originally published in Glastonbury Lifestyle

The Dream Ride Experience 2022 roars into action on Aug. 26 at the Farmington Polo Grounds, marking its 22nd anniversary this year. 

The event, which raises money and awareness for Special Olympics, the Mission 22 veterans charity and the Hometown Foundation - a charity that funds a variety of community programs - will run Aug. 26-28.

The event is sponsored by Bozzuto’s Inc., and is the brainchild of the company’s chief executive, Michael Bozzuto. Since its inception in 2000, the Dream Ride has raised tens of millions of dollars for local charities.

The celebration draws thousands of people from around the country and the world. It features an “exotic auto show” and motorcycle rally that attracts die-hard car and motor sports enthusiasts. 

“The Dream Ride Experience has evolved into a year-long community commitment to celebrate the achievements of our Dream Riders, the true heart and soul of our event,” says Michael. "This weekend event highlights their determination  to persevere, overcome challenges, and shatter stereotypes. We can continue to make dreams come true with the help of all the generous participants, sponsors, and donors.”

Dream Ride 2022 kicks off Friday, Aug. 26, which serves as a “Welcome Day” for the Dream Riders.

“On Friday the car dealers set up, and our special needs Dream Riders fly into the state with their families and chaperones," says Kristy Sevag, communications director for the event. "At 4 p.m. there’s a polo match at the club and we have a gourmet buffet for all of our Dream Riders.” 

On Saturday the car show takes center stage as owners show off their exotic, luxury vehicles, Kristy adds. 

“Car experts from across all brands, such as Ferrari, Aston Martin and McLaren, will take part. There will be a car coffee talk and a Q&A with car dealers. They’ll talk about new car announcements, the building process for their vehicles and any new car developments."

At 3 p.m. the drivers of these ‘Super Cars’ will pair up with their Dream Riders to take them on a police-escorted, 12-mile cruise in the Farmington area.

"Spectators line up along the route to cheer on the Dream Riders. It’s a magical moment for the drivers and their passengers. We sing in the car, we dance, we wave to everyone and you really become connected to that person that you drive with.” 

On Sunday, there's a juried car show and “that’s when the most people show up,” Kristy says. 

There are food trucks, a Pet Adoption Center  about 100 pets get adopted each year), live entertainment and music, a Police K-9 Challenge, a Firefighters Chili Cook-Off, vendors, raffles and a family fun zone.

At 3 p.m., thousands of motorcycles that are part of the weekend will thunder off on a 22-mile ride across the region. 

The weekend, Kristy says, is intended to show Dream Riders how much they’re loved.

“They feel like superstars. We want them to understand how special the world is with them in it, that they’re important and that the Dream Ride and the Farmington Polo Club is their safe space.”

For more information, or for volunteer or sponsorship opportunities contact Kristy@sevagcreative.com

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