BIKER NEWS: Hundreds of bikers raise money for Shriners Hospitals for Children | Outlaws Bikers News

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BIKER NEWS: Hundreds of bikers raise money for Shriners Hospitals for Children

BN- People began to line the main drag in town by 9:30 or 10 a.m. on Sunday morning. It's technically called Route 8, but in Adams it...



BN- People began to line the main drag in town by 9:30 or 10 a.m. on Sunday morning. It's technically called Route 8, but in Adams it's Howland Avenue to Columbia Street to Park Street.

Everyone is looking to the north. As 11 a.m. draws closer, more and more heads turn up the street.

And to the north, at Bowe Field, as 11 a.m. looms, a deep, mechanical roar saturates the air. It is the sound of 1,500 or so motorcyclists revving their engines. It grows louder and louder, difficult to describe, especially if a visitor is watching and listening only a few dozen yards away. Metaphors are elusive.

At precisely 11 a.m., this mechanical caravan sets off: Down Howland, down Columbia, down Park Street. The crowd claps and cheers, as though at a parade. The whole thing lasts maybe five minutes: But the motorcycles and their leather-clad drivers make their stately way through town. Their final destination being the Mohawk Trail Campground in Charlemont.

The 34th annual Fall Run featured a total of 1,500 to 1,800 motorcyclists driving from Adams to the Mohawk campground to raise money for the Shriners Hospitals for Children - Springfield.

The number is somewhat imprecise, according to longtime organizer Michael Robert, because the run picks up a number of motorcyclists along the scenic, 60-mile route, and the bikers are also met at Mohawk Forest by yet another group of motorcycle enthusiasts.

In all, Robert estimated there will be about 2,000 motorcycles at the final destination.

The event annually raises money for the Shriners Hospital for Children - Springfieldl via pledges and donations, said Robert. The annual tally of late has been about $20,000. Last year, according to the Fall Run website, a total of $22,000 was generated.

In all, according to David Butterfield, Potentate of the Springfield Shriners, this event has raised more than a half-million dollars for the hospital.

This is a not-inconsequential fundraiser for the hospital, said Butterfield. Shriners is a non-profit organization that treats a variety of children's ailments, from MS to cleft palates.

But, he said, "we pride ourselves on treating children regardless of their ability to pay."

The 40-50 person contingent of Shriners is usually near the head of the motorcycle caravan.

"I think when I look back at this group of thousands of motorcycles, headlights lit, it's very encouraging to know that the public supports us to enthusiastically. It warms your heart."

Robert added that he was grateful to the 100 or so local volunteers that put in the time to make the event run smoothly, as well as the Adams Events Committee, who also work with his group.

Robert, the owner of Custom City Cycle in Adams, is a generally low-key fellow most days. On Sunday, he is a little more subdued than usual. It has been a long several months of planning with his other organizers.

"I'm beat," he admitted. "I went to bed last night and woke up at 4 a.m., I was nervous. I kept trying to go back to sleep, but it didn't happen."

Robert Waltemeyer, a member of the Berkshire Shriners, believes much of the credit needs to go to Robert, who has been organizing the event since 1982.

"We're successful because of people like Mike," he said. "He's a very dedicated man, and he gives back to his community. Every year, he works to make sure this event is a success. He deserves a lot of credit."

Contact Derek Gentile at 413-496-6251.

More: http://www.berkshireeagle.com/local/ci_28886291/fall-run

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Outlaws Bikers News : BIKER NEWS: Hundreds of bikers raise money for Shriners Hospitals for Children
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