TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (November 2004) – The Hagerty Fund for Historic Vehicle Preservation and Education has awarded a $30,000 grant to the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles to jump-start its Free School Bus Program. An integral part of the Museum’s ongoing endeavor to build community by being an educational resource, the Free School Bus Program provides transportation for students grades K-12 at no cost to participating schools.

The three-year grant period, which begins in January 2005, will enable the Petersen Automotive Museum to arrange for 30 -35 busloads of children per year.

“We are excited to be able to fund such a noble enterprise that will enrich the educational experiences of thousands of under-served Los Angeles students,” says Hagerty Fund Director Bob Knechel. “The Museum’s exhibitions and educational tours not only provide children with an appreciation for California history, but also the invaluable gift of an opportunity to see and experience artistry and technology as expressed in automobile history.”

Suggested lesson plans are created by the Museum’s Education Department, in compliance with the State of California’s Content Standards and Frameworks in the applicable disciples of History-Social Science, Science and the Visual Arts. These plans are available to teachers, who can use them to supplement their in-classroom curriculum with a visit to the Museum.

One of the special educational features of the Petersen Automotive Museum is the May Family Discovery Center, a hands-on interactive children’s gallery dedicated to teaching the principles of science by way of the automobile. The Museum is committed to providing children with a wide variety of learning experiences through its diverse exhibits.

“For many of the LAUSD schools, it is not enough for a museum to offer special educational programs,” says Dick Messer, Director of the Petersen Automotive Museum. “Some schools simply lack the resources to provide their students the luxury of field trips.

That’s why we developed our ‘Free School Bus’ outreach program, targeting elementary, middle and high school students from under-served, lower-income populations in the greater Los Angeles area, and are so grateful that the Hagerty Fund chose to partner with us in this effort.”

The Hagerty Fund for Historic Vehicle Preservation and Education ( is organized through the Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation (, a charitable public foundation dedicated to facilitating philanthropy by supporting a diverse collection of funds. The non-profit Hagerty Fund provides scholarships and grants to worthy individuals and organizations working to preserve the car collector hobby through education, library and museum programs, and other youth-oriented activities. The Fund is supported by membership fees from Hagerty Protection Network members and other outside contributions. The Hagerty Protection Network and the Hagerty Fund are affiliate operations of Hagerty Insurance, the largest insurer of collectible cars, motorcycles and boats in the United States. The company has been in the insurance business for five decades and in the specialty insurance field for nearly 20 years providing inexpensive coverage for antique and vintage autos, modified and custom cars, street rods, sports cars and exotics, as well as vintage boats. For more information on Hagerty Insurance, the Hagerty Protection Network, and the Hagerty Fund, call 800-922-4050 or visit

The Petersen Automotive Museum, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is located at 6060 Wilshire Boulevard (at Fairfax) in Los Angeles. Admission prices are $10 for adults, $5 for seniors and students with ID, and $3 for children ages 5 to 12. Museum members and children under five are admitted free. Covered parking is available for $6.00 per car. Museum hours are Tuesday through Sunday and holiday Mondays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For general Museum information, call 323/930-CARS or visit the Museum’s Web site address at

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