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Motorcyclists, FedEx deliver for United Way of Washington County

Second annual charity ride held

Second annual charity ride held

August 11, 2008|By JOSH SHAW

HALFWAY -- They weren't delivering packages, but FedEx was out Sunday serving the Hagerstown community with the help of the United Way.

Nearly 100 people showed up to the FedEx Ground second annual United Way Charity Ride at the FedEx Ground Hub off Halfway Boulevard for a chance to show off their bikes, win prizes and support the United Way of Washington County.

Last year, the event raised $2,100 and FedEx's goal this year was to raise between $3,000 and $4,000, said Steve Collins, senior manager of the FedEx distribution center.

"We are fortunate as a company financially and as individuals to work with such a great company so it is easy to carry something like this out and do the right thing," Collins said. "Every penny raised goes to the United Way."

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Though Collins said he did not have a final tally on the money raised this year, he said the increase in participants should help them meet their goal.

Addie Staebler, the resource development and campaign director for the United Way of Washington County, said she thinks events like this are going to become even more important in a tough economy.

"It is a progressive way of fundraising," she said. "It was all FedEx and they have done a fantastic job with this event."

Also in attendance was FedEx Ground's number 11 NASCAR car, frequently driven by Denny Hamlin. Collins said the car goes around to different events and was a way to get some more community members and NASCAR fans out to support the United Way.

The main event was a motorcycle ride through Hagerstown which started at 11 a.m. and lasted just more than an hour. The bikes made their way down Virginia Avenue and onto Md. 66 and U.S. 40 before returning to the FedEx hub.

When the bikes returned, they split up into classes to be judged in six different categories. Judged by the riders themselves, plaques were given out to the best bikes in Full Custom, Manufactured Custom, Classic Antique, Street Performance, Street Stock, Touring and a Best in Show.

Brian Bain of Hagerstown, a FedEx employee, won both the Full Custom and Best in Show awards with his all-white 2007 Big Dog Bulldog.

Bain said he rode in last year's event also, and comes out to meet new people and support the United Way.

"I would come out and ride to support them even if I didn't work for FedEx," he said.

Donnie Riehart of Greencastle, Pa., said his friend told him about the ride and wanted to come out for the cause. He said he had never done a ride like this but enjoyed it and said he would do it again next year.

Mike Curry heard about the ride through a co-worker at the Washington County Hospital and also came out to support the United Way.

"I've done different shows before," said Curry, who has been riding motorcycles for 30 years. "It is good to help out with a ride like this."

Everyone's entrance fee of $10 included participation in the ride, lunch, and an opportunity to win raffle prizes. One person also won $151.50 in a 50-50 raffle.

More than 25 FedEx employees and family members volunteered at the event, doing anything from cooking hot dogs and hamburgers to handing out raffle prizes.

In addition to FedEx, numerous local businesses donated food, money and prizes for the event.

"This event allows us to help fulfill our commitment to the community," Collins said. "FedEx raised $16 million for charity last year and it is because of events like this."

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