Fundraiser provides snow tires for 30 Flathead families

    Businesses will work together and team up and try to get 30 families free winter tires in 30 days. Photo: NBC Montana

    It’s the season of giving, and one Flathead Valley business came up with an idea to give a necessary winter item to families in need.

    What you need to survive Montana's winters does not come cheap. "I used to work at a tire business back in 1996, and that was the big winter around here, and I saw lots of families coming in needing tires really bad but not being able to pay for them," said David Boye from Black Diamond Mortgage.

    Boye set out to help those in need.

    "I had this vision that we could get a whole bunch of businesses together and team up and maybe get 30 families free winter tires in 30 days," Boye told NBC Montana.

    Boye called the effort Tires for a Change. He partnered with the Glacier Skate Academy to make fundraiser happen. They found local sponsors and even donors outside the Flathead Valley to help buy snow tires for families.

    Boye and a sponsor from the Association of Independent Mortgage Experts gave tires to Whitefish resident Selina Stanfield.

    "It relieves a lot of stress, because I am terrified to drive from Whitefish to Kalispell, and I have to do that almost on a daily basis, so this is definitely going to relieve my anxiety, and I am just so appreciative," said Stanfield.

    Not only does this help families, but it also helps the Glacier Skate Academy. Sponsors donate $500, and $400 goes to buying the snow tires, while $100 goes to the nonprofit academy.

    "It's very helpful for us to get some ice, but more importantly to help our community," said Sean Wirtz, one of Glacier Skate Academy’s coaches.

    Boye said many community members reached out wanting to help. Some even wanted to donate lightly used snow tires.

    He plans to make Tires for a Change an annual fundraiser.

    "We plan to do more preparation and possibly make it even better next year with the amount of money that is available for the tires and just the overall experience," said Boye.

    That way some families won’t have to worry every time they turn onto the road this winter.

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