The Roar of A Thousand Motorcycles
That’s what residents of the Village of Thorsby heard as riders with the 2011 Edmonton Motorcycle Ride For Dad drove into town. The riders came to play poker for prizes. They came to ride with friends. They came to enjoy a leisurely ride through Central Alberta’s scenic countryside. Most importantly, they came to fundraise for prostate cancer research and education.
Riders left CFB Edmonton in waves, fifty at a time and a few minutes apart. 1049 riders followed the carefully planned route through Fort Saskatchewan, Beaumont, Devon (for lunch), Thorsby, and Stony Plain before they returned to the Garrison for dinner and prizes.
In Thorsby, the vast assemblage of gleaming chrome and sturdy leather was quite a sight as hundreds of riders lined up along Main Street to register, pick up their playing card and purchase ice cream hosted by the Central Alberta Memorial Ride Society (CAMRS).
Thorsby Councillor Rick Hart said, “This was a wonderful event for the town. They announced at the Garrison that Thorsby is the only Village in Canada officially proclaimed by Council to be a recreational biker friendly Village. We had more visitors today than in the past 50 years.”
People from all walks of life join the ride—media celebrities, members of Veteran UN-NATO Canada, seniors, mechanics, students, accountants, business owners, lawyers, doctors. Hart said he met a group of 35 riders who were multimillionaires.
Riders politely held down the noise as they exited Main Street to accommodate a wedding in progress.
The Ride was good for a few local businesses. At KollBrook Esso, cyclists lined up, wall-to-wall, to fuel up—a double tanker truck of fuel stood nearby, ready to meet the demand.
Lorraine Thompson and Darwin Mayor of Edmonton, along with many other riders, took a lunch break at the Sunnybrook Hotel, 11 km west of Thorsby.
“Why do we ride?” asked Thompson, “That’s easy—for the wind in our face, the open road, and the sound of that Harley!”
Mayor added, “This is such a great charity. It is our first time with the Ride For Dad. It is very well organized.”
Last year,Ride For Dad Canada raised 1.7 million dollars for prostate cancer research and education.