The baritone bellow of motorcycle engines filled Prince Rupert’s streets on Sept. 30 as they city’s bikers gathered to help make Christmas a bit more cheerful for community’s less fortunate.
The Prince Rupert Harley Riders Club hosted its 36th annual Toy Run, departing from the Salvation Army building on Fraser Street at and proceeding through the city, making stops at Mariner’s Park, Port Edward, Seal Cove before finishing at the Ocean View Hotel for a celebration dinner.
“Everybody is happy to be here,” said Harley Riders Club president Chris Rose. “We’ve had good weather and good feedback.”
Over 100 riders on 87 bikes filled the Salvation Army parking lot at noon where they mingled, took photos and admired each others rides. Riders also bought tickets for the poker run, where they receive a playing card at each of the five locations with the opportunity to win half the buy-in. The other half is donated to the Salvation Army.
At 1 p.m., the riders gathered for a few words from Salvation Army Corps Officer Sabrina Silvey, who thanked the riders for their contribution.
“Thank you for this,” she said. “This is a beautiful expression of helping the ones who need help and with your help we’ll be able to fill the toy hampers so thank you for this beautiful expression.”
Following a blessing of the event, the riders set off in convoy through the streets. Following the ride and dinner, there was a dance at Chances Prince Rupert. The club donates all the proceeds from its dinner and dance ticket sales to the Salvation Army Hamper Program in addition to any toys or non-perishable food items that are given.
“It’s always good to help your community out, and underprivileged people that can’t get the Christmas goodies and gifts for the kids,” said Harley Riders’ president Chris Rose. “So we’re helping out about 800 families which computes to about 2,500 people every year.”
Rose said the Harley Riders are hoping to equal or surpass the $8,000 amount it raised in 2016.