Hopkinton High School's Student News Site

HHS Press

Hopkinton High School's Student News Site

HHS Press

Hopkinton High School's Student News Site

HHS Press

Shifting Gears: Hopkinton High’s New Car Club

Praneel Tare
Surya Raja is the founder of a new car club that’s planning a car show for April 27th.

One student has taken his passion for cars from the lens of his camera to the community of car enthusiasts. Surya Raja, a junior in HHS, is the founder of a new car club that’s quickly shifting into gear among his peers.

Surya’s vision was fueled by visits to car shows and the encouragement of friendly companionship with other car enthusiasts.

“I had friends with the same interests, and that sparked the whole idea,” Surya said. “I wanted to create a platform where we could all dive deeper into our passion for cars within the school community.”

His motivation was brought upon by the influence of his friends and a long-term passion to host a car meet. He saw the opportunity to establish a similar environment within the school setting, bringing the car show atmosphere to a student level.

Launching the club needed administrative approval, something Surya navigated with a precise roadmap.

“Initially, I presented the idea to Mr. Gonzalez, who agreed to become the club advisor,” Surya details. “After gaining his support, we pitched the concept to Mrs. Theis, followed by discussions with local departments regarding the logistics of our endeavor.”

Many students initially viewed the club with indifference and even open criticism, but Surya pressed on with his plans. As more and more students with a shared love for cars signed up and supercars started joining the ranks, the club began to receive recognition. Their early experiences were marked by the struggle of any new venture facing skepticism.

The journey to the club’s establishment was not a clear path, and the student body’s reaction was mixed at best.

“Like anything new, there was skepticism,” says Surya. “Some classmates were quick to mock the idea, but as the club began to form, attitudes shifted.” The presence of high-performance vehicles and growing membership helped earn the club a newfound recognition.

The upcoming car show—a testament to the club’s and his ambitions—required thorough planning. Surya met with various stakeholders, from the public finance department to ensure financial compliance, with the police for maintaining order during the event. Planning meetings involved discussions with the fire department for safety protocols and coordination with food services for those crucial food truck permits. The level of detail even extended to getting the nod of approval from Superintendent Dr. Cavanaugh.

This forthcoming show, while not aimed at charity due to logistical concerns, is promising in scope with an anticipated fleet of vehicles.

“It started small, but now we’re almost at capacity,” Surya reveals. “It’s been a great surprise to see the community’s response, and it’s all been possible with robust marketing on our social channels.” The event promises a spectacle, with a diverse selection of cars and popular food trucks in attendance.

The event is officially on the school’s calendar for April 27th. Plans are in place for an impressive lineup of roughly 100 cars, spanning from supercars to varieties of sports cars. Not just a feast for the eyes, the show plans to cater to the crowd with a range of food truck offerings and complimentary refreshments.

Concerning safety measures, Surya is adamant about maintaining order.

“We’re in a residential zone,” he states. “So it’s crucial we respect that with enforced rules, supported by the presence of the police department, to ensure a safe experience for all attendees.”

The car club aims to build on the momentum of its first event, with future shows on the horizon.

“We’re laying the groundwork this year, and we’re definitely thinking about collaborative events,” Surya said, suggesting partnerships beyond high school walls—potentially with college-based and local car clubs.

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