Ride for Our Heroes: New England Biker Community Rides to Support Veterans and Families

June 13, 2011 – BOSTON – New England-area motorcycle enthusiasts are kick starting their bikes and riding in the first Ride for Our Heroes on Saturday September 24.  Ride for Our Heroes supports the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program’s services for veterans and families affected by combat stress and traumatic brain injury.  The Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program provides clinical care and support services to service members and veterans of the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, throughout New England, who are affected by combat stress and traumatic brain injury (TBI) – the “invisible wounds of war.” Home Base also provides counseling for families; education for clinicians and community members; and research in the understanding and treatment of PTSD and TBI.

The Ride for Our Heroes will kick-off at six locations – one in each New England state – with special guest speakers, military leaders, celebrities and an opening ceremony. Riders will finish the trip with a celebratory “Rider Appreciation” party at the Manchester Harley-Davidson dealership in Manchester, New Hampshire which offers a 16-acre site for a complimentary BBQ, family entertainment, live music, and raffle.

“The biker community has a long history of riding to support veterans through its annual Rolling Thunder event which raises awareness of POWs and MIAs and supports veterans’ services.  We hope the Ride for Our Heroes can become another great tradition to honor those who suffer from the “invisible wounds of war”—post traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury.  We are honored to work with the biker community on this event,” said John Parrish, MD, Director of the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program.

As part of Ride for Our Heroes, the Home Base Program will be raffling off a custom-designed Home Base and baseball-themed Dirico Motorcycle that features an autograph by Aerosmith music legend and co-founder of Dirico Motorcycles, Steven Tyler.

“The Ride for Our Heroes has all the right elements for New England-area bikers; a tremendous cause of serving veterans and families, six starting locations so all bikers in New England can participate, food and fun activities for family members, and a bike raffle.  We are delighted to be part of it,” said Steve Talarico, President of Manchester Harley-Davidson and Dirico Motorcycles.

Riding is not a requirement to support the event.  Supporters who do not wish to ride may attend the post-ride BBQ by purchasing tickets on line.  For those interested in showing their support for the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program, donations can be made online.

To pre-register for the ride, purchase motorcycle raffle tickets, purchase event BBQ tickets, make a donation or learn more, please visitwww.homebaseprogram.org/rideforourheroes.

For veterans and family members who want more information about the Red Sox Foundation and Mass General Hospital Home Base Program, or to schedule a confidential appointment, please call 617-724-5202, email homebaseprogram@partners.org or visitwww.homebaseprogram.org.

About the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program
The Home Base Program provides clinical care to New England veterans of the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan who experience combat or deployment-related stress and/or traumatic brain injury (TBI); counseling to family members including spouses, parents, children, siblings, partners and other family members facing deployment or re-integration challenges; community education for caregivers throughout New England who serve veterans and families including primary care physicians, social workers, clergy, and first-responders; access to clinical trials and the newest and most effective therapy and treatment for PTSD and traumatic brain injury.  The Home Base Program is a philanthropic partnership between the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital. For information about the Red Sox Foundation and Mass General Hospital Home Base Program, please visit www.homebaseprogram.org.

Georgia Motorcyclists Ride on The Capitol To Protest Checkpoints

Over 300 motorcyclists roared into downtown Atlanta and surrounded the State Capitol Wednesday March 23, 2011 to protest the recent Georgia State Patrol motorcycle only checkpoints.

Using a $70,000 grant from the National Transportation Highway Safety Administration NHTSA, the State and local officers set up motorcycle only checkpoints on the two main interstates leading into Florida during Daytona’s spring Bike Week.

The checkpoints were located on I-95 and I-75 in the southbound truck weigh stations on Wednesday March 9th.

Newly elected ABATE State Director, Dan Forrest said he was pleased at the turnout and the diversity of the riders who joined the protest.

“(turnout)  was beyond expectations and I hope a sign of  unity in the biker community.”  Forest said.  “We had several patch club members from urban riding groups and this was far from the normal group we have attracted in the past.”

Forrest said the speakers called on the State Patrol and the Governor’s office to focus on programs that will save lives and not just profile motorcyclists.  “The central point of every speakers message was that money needs to be spent on EDUCATION of the driving public to make them aware of motorcycles. Use the media for public service announcements, bill boards, class room training for new drivers.” Forrest said.

Other speakers pointed out how the interstate checkpoints resembled police actions of  totalitarian regimes and not a free republic.

“The roadblocks are a violation of our rights and are a pure attempt at profiling. The Savannah stop had 17 GSP cars, 2 Sheriff’s cars, 1 DOT car, a van filming and photographing every biker and a helicopter. This sounds like a Border Crossing in a communist country and has nothing to do with safety.”

The State Patrol nor the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety did not respond to a request for a statement.  However, Patrol officers have indicated they will hold five more one day checkpoints throughout the year.

Forrest said ABATE of Georgia will continue to lobby against the checkpoints and added that under his leadership he hopes ABATE can become a voice for all motorcyclists and expand its mission to fight any and all legislation that unfairly targets motorcycle owners and riders.     “ABATE of Georgia has suffered through some very poor leadership over the past few years and has spent too much time and effort on the ‘Freedom of Choice ‘ bill or rather lack of it. We have been known as the helmet law people and  have been shunned by many riding groups because of that fact.”   He continued, “We have taken the first step in unity and we must continue to grow as one voice.”

 

 

Bikers Escort Boy to School To Protest Flag Ban

flag bearing motorcyclists escort teenager who was told not to fly the flag on his bicycle at school

A 13-year-old Northern California boy at the center of a flag controversy got a big show of support this morning from members of the  biker community.

Last week Cody Alicea was told by his Stanislaus County middle school that he couldn’t ride to school with a U.S. flag on his bike.

The school has since changed its mind much to the credit of the story going international, thanks to people like radio host Rush Limbaugh to soldiers serving in Afghanistan.

Watch Video Here

As he proudly displayed the flag for his ride to school Monday, he was joined by a parade of people on motorcycles. The group said the Pledge of Allegiance upon arriving at school.

“It means a lot to me,” a tearful Alicea told KCRA.

The school said the original ban of his flag was due to safety concerns. Denair Unified School District Superintendent Edward Parraz told KCRA the campus recently experienced racial tensions. He said some students got out of hand on Cinco de Mayo. He said some students displayed the Mexican flag, while others displayed American flags.

Alicea said Monday he is surprised by all the attention he is getting. “This is big,” Alicea said. “I didn’t think it’d get this big.”


Live Where You Ride

Ocklawaha Florida (pronounced “ahk-lah-wah-ah”) sits on the shores of Lake Weir, one of the most pristine lakes in Florida, with virtually no algae and a nice sandy bottom, just made for swimming, boating, and outlaws.

What’s that?  Outlaws in Florida?  Well, not today, but before Waco, and Ruby Ridge, Ocklawaha held the distinction of being the site of the largest shoot-out in FBI history.

Ma Barker (Arizona Donnie Clark Barker) 1872? - January 16, 1935

On the morning of January 16, 1935, FBI agents surrounded the home of Ma Barker. The four hour shoot out that followed resulted in 4000-5000 rounds being fired!

How the gang’s hideout was discovered is attributed to a 15 foot alligator in Lake Weir.  It seems that a brother, Doc Baker was arrested in Chicago a week before the shoot out and was holding a letter from the gang and in it was a brief mention of how they had been trying to kill “Gator Joe.”    Well the FBI put two and two together and the rest is written in folklore.

Today the gang members have disappeared from the real estate around Lake Weir  and only orange groves, palm trees, and majestic oaks dripping with Spanish moss remain.

Gator Joe is gone, but his foot lives on

And real estate is exactly the purpose of this story.
LIKE MINDED NEIGHBORS

Lake Weir Living, a community of motorcycle enthusiasts, conceived by Neil Schuster is under construction and is unlike any other development in the United States. “Lake Weir Living is not only biker friendly but biker-driven” said Schuster.  “It’s a place where motorcycle ownership is not only  tolerated but also encouraged. Shuster said, “I’m building more than just a neighborhood, I building a community.”
With so many developments around the US placing restrictions on motorcycle ownership and unfriendly Home Owners Associations creating rules that make motorcycle owners feel more like criminals in their own neighborhood, Lake Weir Living is like a cool ride down a nice winding road.

According to Adriana Rosas, marketing director, LWR is a 2500 home site development that is marketed to and comprised of riders and motorcycle enthusiasts, no HOA, and limited restrictions with  the abundance of great riding in the area.  Daytona is only 55 miles away and Leesburg Bike Fest is

The Tuscan Model home

only 20 minutes away.

The idea of inviting 20 or 30 motorcycle riding friends over for a backyard bar-b-que is, for many homeowners around the US, simply not an option because of noise and parking restrictions.  At Lake Weir Living, affordable luxury living meets the motorcycle lifestyle and both live happily ever after.

TWELVE MONTH RIDING SEASON

A big draw to the area has to be weather which translates into a 12 month riding season.  While central Florida can experience a few cold snaps, generally speaking, there will be days in every month when the temperatures routinely climb into the upper 50’s and 60’s and it’s not uncommon for January to experience 70 degree days.  This has proved to be a huge selling point for motorcyclists looking to escape the brutal winters that limit their saddle time to April through September.  Located on CR 25, literally across the street from Lake Weir, the homeowners in the development can use the public access to the lake for $35 a year, and is a huge draw for motorcyclists who also enjoy fishing and boating.

CUSTOM DESIGNED HOMES

The lots range from 1 acre to 1/4 acre and can be combined. If you’re not ready to build, lot prices range from  upper teens to the $20ks.    Zoning is single-family and of course motorcycle use in encouraged.
Home owners can either use a builder of their choice or Schuster has contracted with a custom builder who is willing to modify any design to accommodate the motor sports enthusiast. One home buyer is even considering a 5 car garage in order to accommodate motorcycles, boat and ATV’s.
Prices for these custom built houses begin in the 90’s and up to $160, depending on the square footage and the homebuyers wants and tastes. Best of all, this includes the lot!
Six basic floorplans can be modified to meet the unique desires of the homeowner.
A 1,403 square foot “Weston” model costs $132,000 and comes with a full set of Sears Kenmore appliances, in white, bone or black.  A slight up charge is added for stainless.
Forward thinkers, Schuster and Rosas have embraced the internet and YouTube as a way to keep the project moving forward with daily updates on the new homes being built and existing model tours.  Easy to find online, just log onto YouTube and type, “Live Where You Ride” and you’ll find short video clips.   Be sure to check out the video with the builder and land owner Neil Schuster, its very informative. www.livewhereyouride.com.
Besides providing information to potential home owners, the videos serve as a “progress report” for the eventual owner, who, in many cases live thousands of miles away, waiting on their dream home completion before moving in.
If affordable Central Florida living sounds like something you’re interested in, visit www.livewhereyouride.com and read more or call Adriana at Lake Weir Living (352) 304-0027