In South Carolina alone, there are more than one hundred organized motorcycle events scheduled each year. Some events are opportunities for fellow bikers to talk chrome and crankshafts, and others are occasions to find accessories or ape hangers. From weekly Bike Nights in Greenville to the Fall Bike Rally in Myrtle Beach, bikers congregate with frequency and garner attention. While Sturgis, the most commonly known biker event is a bit indulgent, many motorcycle events follow a path toward more worthy causes.
In Charleston, 100% of the proceeds from the Annual Goodwill Undy 500 go to fund local veteran programs. Bulldog Cycles in Ulmer hosts the Believe in Someone with Autism fundraiser which benefits the Autism Society of South Carolina. Shriner’s Hospital is the recipient of the earnings from Greenville’s Biker Bash for Shriner’s held at the Greenville Shrine Club. Birdie’s Ride, A Celebration of Hope takes place in Sumter and supports Birdie’s Nesting Place, a refuge for cancer patients. Hog Tails 2nd Annual “In Memory of Nic Brock” Benefit serves as a fundraiser and memorial. Hosted by the Brock Family and Hog Tails, the event preserves the memory and celebrates the life of young Nic Brock who lost her battle with acute promyelocytic leukemia. Proceeds benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
Most charity rides include multiple stops at local businesses or regional landmarks and miles of beautiful South Carolina countryside. Some events include vendors with merchandise or food and beverage stands for bikers, riders, and spectators. Poker runs typically charge an entry fee, and cards are drawn at each stop. The mechanics and logistics of each event may vary, but the commitment to support the cause and celebrate the ride is consistent for most charity rides.
Bikers are noticed for many different reasons, and not all of them involve motorcycles. Sometimes bad news makes headlines, and good news is relegated to the back page. Maybe not all honorable deeds are newsworthy, but worthy causes and compassionate people make good news and happy bikers.