TRINITY — Medical Center of Trinity staged its 2019 “Start Your Engines” car show April 13 and crowds found themselves with an emergency of sorts — trying to find the time to see all the cars on display.
Mary Sommise, MCT director of marketing, said the event, which debuted six years ago, is coordinated with the Suncoast Mopars classic car enthusiasts group, and the Christian Hot Rod Association.
“We had 310 cars registered making this the largest one yet,” Sommise said.
She said the Medical Center started the event as a way to be a more involved part of the community.
“We hoped people would come out and see the hospital outside of an emergency room visit or serious surgical procedure,” Sommise said. “It has really taken off.”
Proceeds from the event help to benefit area nonprofit causes.
The refreshment stand helped to raise money for the Medical Center’s various “walk teams” supporting Making Strides for Breast Cancer, the Out of Darkness Walk to End Suicide, and the March of Dimes’ March for Babies.
Car show proceeds have been designated for the AAU Youth Basketball team.
As visitors neared the hospital’s main entrance, it gave the appearance of an opening night in Hollywood with all the classic cars parked along the circle.
Joining the classic cars was a modern medical wonder.
A demonstration model of the hospital’s robotic surgeon on which visitors could attempt their skills was there among the automotive wonders of yesteryear.
Several physicians manned the robot throughout the day telling of the robot’s help making surgery less intrusive, more accurate and an asset in a quicker recovery time.
Jared Frattini, a colon and rectal surgeon, said the technology “is used to improve the surgeon’s ability to get great outcomes as far as surgical procedures.”
Frattini was not there just for the robot. He, along with the hundreds of others, had brought his classic car for show.
And, at least one other doctor was there for a little fun.
Reut Bardach, an obstetrician-gynecologist with the Orange Blossom Women’s Group, showed her skills as she used the robot to strike a match and light the candle on a cake celebrating her first anniversary at the Trinity center.