Christmas Bureau supported by motorcycle riders

By: On: November 11th, 20090 Comments »Updated: July 6, 2014

Santa at Tattoo ShopThe Union County Christmas Bureau in North Carolina got some help again this year from local motorcycle riders participating in a charity ride.  The annual Toy Run was blessed with great weather, even though the early morning temperatures were near frost conditions.  As a motorcyclist participating in a charity ride, not only does is feel good to help others that are in need, but it is a great way to have a lot of fun, and meet other riders.

My riding group this year consisted of two of my neighbors each riding Victory motorcycles, me on my Moto Guzzi, and two more friends on their Harley-Davidson touring bikes.   We rode on down to the starting point at the McDonald’s restaurant in Monroe.   It was good to see such a large turnout again this year!

I noticed some familiar faces from last year, including Mr. and Mrs. Claus with their big Harley towing the red sleigh.  It was also good to see the local police helping out at the start.  We arrived just in time to register, donate our toys, pick a card for the poker run, and then head inside for a quick free breakfast.

We headed over to Old Skool Customs in Marshville for our first stop.  The shop was impressive and true to its name, with lots of Harley-Davidson parts, accessories, fenders, tanks, bags, and you name it.  Actually, the place is kind of a biker’s shopping compound.  Next to the bike shop they have a pretty nice store selling leather jackets, chaps and vests, jewelry, t-shirts, hats, and all sorts of biker collectibles.  Across the street, they even have a tattoo and piercing shop.  Old Skool Customs really has it all, especially if you like Harley-Davidson motorcycles.

We carefully headed out of Marshville and took some back roads up to Skinnyz Bar & Grille  in Matthews for some lunch.  (Next time I go there, I’m trying the Po’ Boyz Deluxe with the conecuh sausage). By the time we arrived, most of the riders were leaving, which actually worked out well for us because the restaurant wasn’t overcrowded.

Altogether, It was a pretty fun five hours out with the “boys” that morning.  I met some good people, and some questionable characters too, but that’s what makes these rides a lot fun.  The changing colors of the Carolina trees was an awesome site and I rode to some places I have never been before.  Not a bad day at all.

Regarding the Chrsitmas Bureau, just on their first day in late October, they received 150 applications for assistance.  “This is going to be our most challenging Christmas ever”, said Gloria Haney, the volunteer services coordinator for the Union County Department of Social Services and Head of the Union County Christmas Bureau.  Contact Gloria at the Christmas Bureau at 704-296-4312 to see how you can help too.  They are in need of non-perishable foods, monetary donations, and are also looking for a 20,000 square foot building to use.

Thanks to John B. and all the other volunteers that helped organize this ride.  I look forward to doing it again next year.

About John Clay

John Clay is the author of MotorcycleInfo.Org. He and his family reside in North Carolina in the United States. A graduate of the Motorcycle Safety Foundation's Experienced Rider Course, he enjoys riding his Moto Guzzi in charity rides and serves as a volunteer motorcycle marshal for an annual bicycle charity event in the Carolinas.

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