Ferrari fundraiser benefits Connecticut Children’s Hospital

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WEST HARTFORD--  It's not too often you get to see a Ferrari or Lamborghini on the road - let alone dozens all at once.

That was the scene in West Hartford Sunday - all to raise money for a great cause.

Thousands of spectators and car owners descended upon LaSalle Road in West Hartford Center for the 15th Annual Ferrari and Friends Concorso, presented by the Ferrari Club of America, New England Region.

Organizers say 117 Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Alfa Romeos, Maseratis and other exotic Italian automobiles appeared in this year's show.

"I'm from Buffalo, and never seen as many Ferrari's in one spot," said spectator Sean Macaluso.

The event is held each year to raise money for the Connecticut Children's Medical Center. This year's event will support a state-of-the-art Center for Procedural Excellence.

"We've given the hospital $1 million in the 15 years we've been doing this. There's a lot of good things that have happened at the hospital because of this event," said Andrew Baldassarre, the chairman for Concrorso Ferrari & Friends.

Around $100,000 was raised this year through entry fees, memorabilia sales and a silent auction.

Turnout was slightly better than expected given the rain, organizers said.

The day commenced with the much-anticipated "Parade of Kids," in which patients from Connecticut Children's had the unique opportunity to ride in a procession of featured Ferrari s and Italian sports cars.

"The cars are the attractions but the kids are the celebrities. That's why we do these shows every year," said Michael Simonetta, vice chairman of Concorso Ferrari & Friends.

Organizers said more exotic and rare Ferrari models than ever before appeared at the show, including a 1957 Ferrari 355, one of only four ever built.

"It's a priceless car, said Simonetta. "That's an understatement."

A 2014 Ferrari LeFerrari, the most powerful Ferrari ever produced, was on display at the show.  The 950 hp LaFerrari costs around $1 million, and only 500 were built.

"That's the first time it's been in public," said Simonetta.