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Motorcyclists ride for kids

September 22, 2008|By JOSHUA BOWMAN

WASHINGTON COUNTY -- The next time you get held up in traffic by a group of motorcycles, don't be so quick to complain.

There is a good chance the slow-moving bikes are riding for a worthwhile cause.

When motorcycle associations organize group rides, they are often raising money for a charity or other nonprofit organization, said biker Deb Carbaugh.

Carbaugh and her husband, Dennis, of Greencastle, Pa., were two of nearly 100 people expected to take part in Sunday's Ride for Kids, sponsored by the Pennsylvania Chapter C Gold Wing Road Riders Association.

The ride is held every year to benefit the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation, Chapter C Director Larry Dice said.

Area riders met Sunday between 9 and 11 a.m. for the Gold Wing chapter's annual fundraiser at Twigg Cycles in Hagerstown. Tickets cost $10 per person.

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The fundraiser normally includes a Poker Run, but Dice said the group decided to change the event a little this year.

In honor of the ride's route to Antietam National Battlefield, Dice said each rider received blue or gray toy soldiers with a certain amount of points allotted to each. The riders with the highest points won cash prizes.

The group also raffled items and gave away door prizes.

By 11 a.m., all riders were on their way. Dice said he hoped to draw about 100 riders. He said last year's ride raised about $1,000 for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation.

Not all people who donate money for the fundraiser participate in the ride, Dice said.

"We will probably get some other motorcycle groups stop by and they'll just make a cash donation," Dice said.

Sandy Martin traveled from Carlisle, Pa., to attend the fundraiser. She said she wasn't sure whether she would ride.

"It's just nice to be a part of and to hang out and talk to all the people," said Martin, who belongs to a Gold Wing Road Riders' chapter in Carlisle.

Twigg Cycles allowed the group to use its building for the fundraiser and provided lunch after the ride.

The business usually is closed on Sundays but opens every year for the event, General Manager Jeff Davis said.

"It's just a great way to support the motorcycle community," Davis said.

Deb Carbaugh said she has participated in the ride for about 10 years.

She was a full member of the Gold Wing chapter until she and her husband bought a Harley-Davidson.

Now she is an associate member of the Gold Wing group and belongs to a local Harley-Davidson group.

"There's no animosity. We still have both bikes and they still love us here," Carbaugh joked.

She said she and her husband take part in several charity rides every year and plan to participate in a ride on Oct. 11 in honor of slain Smithsburg Police Officer Christopher Nicholson.

"It's something people need to be aware of. The motorcycling community does a lot of charity rides to benefit the community and groups that need it," Carbaugh said.

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