2023 Ride for Kids




I must’ve been 15 when I saw my first “Ride for Kids” roll by. There were hundreds of motorcycles rolling down the road, two by two. I’d soon come to learn that motorcyclists are a highly philanthropic bunch. What I did know at the time was that I wanted to do that ride for one year. I remember seeing them in college several years later. Alas, it was still a few more years before I was to have a bike of my own.

The Ride for Kids is a nationwide motorcycle ride in late September to raise money for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation. While I don’t have any direct connection with this organization, the Ride for Kids is well-known in the motorcycling community and has been sponsored by Honda for many years.

I recently joined the BMW Motorcycle Club of Northern California. They are a diehard group of riders who love to go camping. I saw this year’s Ride for Kids event posting slide across my inbox and thought, “I’m going to do this!”

Having had a rough ride from Lake Tahoe the night before, I slept hard – probably harder than ever with my CPAP machine. I woke up feeling no short of fantastic! Even better, the ride start was only 30 minutes away, and no bridge was required!

It was great to see so many bikes. Much like in my youth, bikes and riders of all types rallied around the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation. The only bike I could not find was a Husqvarna – not that the Swedish aren’t philanthropic, but I couldn’t find one across the hundreds of bikes there, LOL.

The ride was about 50 miles through the Livermore Hills, and a couple of things stood out during the ride. First, I’ve never ridden two across the same lane for such a distance. In some ways, I felt like Ponch or John from the show CHiPs back in the 70s! My lane discipline, being on the inside of the lane, was tested in a good way. Secondly, since the ride was a CHP-escorted endeavor, we didn’t have to stop at any stoplights or signs. While 50 miles may seem short – in a procession of 400 where you don’t stop and are averaging 25 miles an hour – my whole body was beginning to hurt, LOL.

I picked up some new roads and was reminded of old favorites. In particular, Patterson Pass Road. Being near the back of the procession, by the time I came through, almost every car on the road was parked on the shoulder. Patterson Pass isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s a tight, windy road just over a lane wide. Having all of the cars off to the side was fantastic!

As with any of these events, part of the fun is walking around and seeing all of the different bikes, customizations, and farkles on everyone’s bike.

All good fun, all for a good cause.


Related Posts

Subscribe to the Dashed Yellow Line!


Leave a Reply