LAURINBURG — Motorcycle riders love a good excuse to cruise on their bikes and charity is the best reason of all.
More than 15 riders turned out for the first ever Change for the Children benefit poker run for Scotland County Partnership for Children and Families, formerly Smart Start.
“I’m with the Golden Wings Road Riders Association [Honda Gold Wing riders] and the local organization here is Scotland Wings, there’s a few of us here today,” said Laurinburg Police Detective Rodney Strickland. “You’ve got a bunch of people that share a common interest, a love of motorcycles, and then you add on top of that it’s a fund raiser, so it’s something for the good of the community. So when we get a chance to get on our motorcycles and get out and ride and do some good for the community, hey, we’re going to do it.”
Several police officers and deputies rode in the poker run and both the Scotland County Sheriff’s Office and Laurinburg Police Department escorted riders around the county.
“It was awesome, everybody had such a great time,” said Jodi Anderson, parent educator and event coordinator. “The numbers were what I expected but not what I was hoping for.”
Anderson hopes to be able to do the ride again and hopes it continues to grow and bring in more riders and funds.
Tickets to the event were $20 per rider and $5 for each additional rider.
Riders gathered at Carlie C’s IGA at 10 a.m. and took off on the 100-mile tour of Scotland County at 11 a.m.
Cyclists stopped at Cypress Bend Vineyards, Old Laurel Hill Presbyterian Church, Mamie’s Drive-In, and ended at General McArthur’s for lunch. Riders were given a playing card at every stop where it was listed on a sheet and initialed to create a poker hand.
“I just want to thank the sheriff’s department and police department they were on point. The sheriff’s department kept us safe on the ride around the county and the police department did amazing in town,” said Anderson.
The winning hand was given a gift certificate to Burnout Alley in Moor County and the worst poker hand received a door prize of a car wash bucket filled with supplies.
A 50/50 raffle raised an additional $40 for the Partnership.
The proceeds from the event will go toward the organizations overall fundraising goal of $10,000 for the year and help support worthwhile causes like teen parenting classes and activities that support literacy like the Partnership’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library and Reading is Fundamental programs.
Anderson issued a thanks to Partnership board members: Randy Gibson, Dee Hammond, Stephanie Hasty, Angela Galloway, Tamara Bryant and Lynnette Butler who helped man tables and stops along the route.
Reach Beth Lawrence 910-506-3169Poker