Ride For Kids

Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation Photos   Home

Sunday, October 2, 2005, Hillsboro Stadium, Hillsboro, OR They knew they'd get soaked, but they showed up anyway. The recent Ride for Kids charity ride put on by the Pediatric Brain Tumor foundation attracted some 70 machines that started out the day clean and went home ready for the hose and some TLC.

Organizers and traffic marshals had been on site since well before sunrise. Tents were set up to house the registration process, event prizegiving and announcements as well as the food and goodies for those making charitable contributions.

Rider registration ran from 7:30 to 9:30am when the troupe rolled out of the stadium grounds escorted by Hillsboro and Forest Grove Police Motor Departments.

The ride took us out through the backroads of Washington County to Hwy 47 and the turnoff to Henry Hagg Lake. At every turn, traffic was temporarily halted while a steady stream of bikes went through. All the while, police bikes rode ahead in the oncoming lane and cycled out their buddies as the procession made its way through the countryside.

Speed was modest at about 45mph as befit the numbers and logistics involved. There's always that strange feeling that accompanies riding through red lights while law enforcement looks on and watching someone pass you in a manoeuver that would fetch you a hefty ticket if you were doing it under any other circumstances.

As we started the loop around the lake, rain started to come down in earnest and the wet weather gear began to earn its keep. By the time we left the park, stair rods of serious precipitation were splashing onto windshields and visors from the south and west. Spirits undaunted and enjoying an end of season ride, we filed through Hillsboro downtown and back to the stadium.

On arrival, the remaining crowd of about 130 people huddled under the main tent while Kyle Clarke from the Foundation MC'd the proceedings which included honoring those who made contributions both financial and otherwise. There were interviews with parents and the kids who had been helped by the organization in their struggle back to health.

The message was that after some 20 years, progress had been made, but there was still a ways to go. The event raised over $16,000. With better weather it certainly could have been more. Local motorcycle stores made significant contributions.

A few words were said by Kyle Clarke of the Foundation and Sgt. Chris Fink of the Washington County Sheriff's Office to thank the police officers who shepherded the parade around the route. Whether your respect is grudging or not, it's always a pleasure to watch the pro's at work, and the nine officers who took part were no exception. There were no incidents or accidents. They clearly enjoyed their job that day and on return could be seen high-fiving one another in the parking lot.

When awards, accolades and thanks had been handed out, riders drifted out of the parking lot, no doubt going home to get dry and kick back or get on with chores that had been delayed in order to participate. Will this become an annual event ? We'll see ...

Event Pin
Hillsboro & Forest Grove Police Escort
Charity riders assemble after the ride
Kyle Clarke speaks for the Foundation
The end justifies the means. $16,000 raised !


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© 2005 Open Road Rider: Ride photographs and article