As I woke up on Saturday, April 27, 2013, the first thing I did was check outside to see what Mother Nature had given us to work with…
If you remember last Saturday, you’ll understand why I was a little saddened by the gloomy rain.
But then I remembered that the biker community is all about helping children and our veterans. I knew right away that even rainy weather wouldn’t stop the 2nd Annual Bikers for Backs from being a day of sharing and giving back.
I felt moved and blessed as I watched people ride through the rainy parking lot at Shirley’s that morning. While all but one person – John Snyder – left their bikes at home and chose to drive cars due to the rain, each person still carried a colorful backpack filled with kid-friendly food.
At our first stop alone, we collected roughly 50 backpacks and other bags of food. We also sold about 25 t-shirts before we headed out for our next stop.
When we arrived at our second stop, I began laying out the Bikers for Backpacks t-shirts. One gentleman in a Marines Corps vest stopped by the table and said he couldn’t buy a shirt because it wasn’t made by a union worker.
A good friend of mine and ex-Marine, Kel Jensen, overheard the exchange. She walked right over, bought the man a shirt and took it to his table.
Kel explained that the $15 dollar shirt paid for 60 meals for hungry kids. She then pointed over to two tables filled with bikers and said, “‘they are also Teamsters so take your shirt off and put this on!’”
Thanks to Kel, the man walked around the whole time we were there wearing the Bikers for Backpacks shirt!
We shared our third stop location with another charity ride – BAA Bikers against Autism. Due to all the rain, their original last stop of the day in Grafton was under water.
Members of our ride even bid on some of their auction items.
My friend John Snyder grabbed the microphone and explained to everyone in the room how we all came together and shared our day to help out children in need.
The lead singer of the band performing at our stop bought a Bikers for Backpacks t-shirt for $100!
By the end of the day, we had collected $1,373 in cash donations, 63 backpacks and 695 pounds of kid-friendly food.
All in all it was a great event with or without Mother Nature being on our side! Thanks to everyone who weathered the storm. We’ll see you next year!
We would like to thank Wristbands.net for their generous donation of custom wristbands for Bikers for Backpacks!
And a special thank you to the following individuals who helped make this a great day – John Snyder, Sarah Jenner, Cindy Jenner, Mary Givens, Pat Delhougne, Gail Chadwick, Carol Gabriel, Denise Daugherty and Tracy and Jerry Ripley with Ride Hard Magazine.