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April 8th Edition

In This Issue:


Riding BE-cause - a Focus on Not-for-Profit Events & Efforts

Lil' Weather

TCR Classifieds

Free Thinking with FancyFree

Writing challenge: View from the Back Seat!

Orangeburg Ron says: Watch out for Buzzards!

Calendar Girl Week's Highlights

EVENT REPORTS: Columbia & Greenville-Spartanburg events

Spring Rally Photo Contest - Enter thru May

Loose Talk with Jon


Look for much more at










The Little Weather Quickie for the Greater Charlotte Area

for Week of April 8-15, 2014

Tuesday 67 p-cloudy, Wednesday 69 p-cloudy, Thursday 73 sunny, Friday 76 p-cloudy, Saturday 76 sunny, Sunday 78 m-cloudy, Monday 75 few showers, Tuesday 60 rain (as per on 4/08/14)



Current Listings:


Listed 3/3/14 - Custom Chopper - $10,500 OBO, 1998 Custom Rigid, 120CC Delkron motor. This is a great custom chopper, has many upgrades including, ape hanger handle bars, 5 speed baker trans, custom wheels, new tires, open primary, JB brakes and a chain drive. This bike screams with 120 hp and low miles. One owner. Call 704-236-9222 to see. Owner is motivated. (Charlotte)



Taking Care

30 years ago I was banned from watching animal movies - the ones with the heart-breaking stories, even the animated ones. I can't take it. After too many wrecked movie evenings as I sobbed away, I and my former spouse decided it was best if I didn't allow my soft spot to be trampled on any more.

Lots of you are softies too. We've shared our tender tales as animal lovers at bike events and you've snuggled up to my two standard poodles. Some of you have dogs (and other pets) who ride with you. And so for those of us whose hearts just might not take it, I am issuing a gentle warning about a story I posted into our Articles Section today.

I got an email over the weekend that hurt my heart. Even if the end of the story is that she's alive and healing, I felt punched in the gut to hear that our dear Quece had been hurt in a bike incident. Her "Mom's" words brought tears to my eyes and I wasn't sure I could read the whole story much less share it with you. The pics were really hard to view as well. Nevertheless, her story is online now for you to read and here's what Jane, her mom, shared in today's email: "She is doing remarkably well.  Lavendar Epsom salt bath, some neosporin on the boo boo's, drugs and lot's of TLC are the plan while she heals."

Quece "writes" for The Carolina Rider (with apt help from her mom Jane!) and adds such a fun flavor to our diverse publication. You've read about her family's adventures and we hope to hear more, but as Jane says, "Since riding was Quece's idea when she started over 50,000 miles ago,  we will let her decide if she ever wants to ride again."

She might have four legs but she's a devoted rider. Maybe the painful words of her story can be countered positively with some healing words from us all. You can write her - please do!

April Invitation:

Do you "Ride on the Back?"

I'm putting a call out to all of you who are backseat riders. Tell us your story! We wanna hear from you! I'm one who enjoys the choice. I ride on the back sometimes and ride my own bike other times. It's a choice for me that I appreciate but some riders' ride of choice is on the back. I've met and talked with backseat riders who keep toying with the idea of taking the class and riding their own but there's just something about being settled on "the throne" or giddy-ly hanging on for dear life! And then there are those who look down at backseaters. Poo! We'll have none of that. We're all Riders no matter where we sit down. Ain't personal choice a wonderful thing?!

Write your story and you could win an overnight stay at Skyline Village Inn for you and the one who steers the wheels you ride plus TCR t-shirts for both of you!....


We flipped the page to April last week and, just like the daffodils and Judas trees, the season is blooming! The Events Calendar went from slim pickins' straight to "how do I choose which event to ride in?!" And even tho Spring is still spittin' and sputterin' to a full cruise, we're pulling into "that time of year!" Sure, TCR reader "Iron Horse" who wrote last week's "When is it TOO COLD to Ride?" piece, might have been riding in sub-normal temps all Winter, the rest of us are crawling out of Southern hibernation and getting back on two wheels. I enjoyed a couple rides myself last week and look forward to more later this week. Drink in the goodness of Spring riding, my Carolina sisters and brothers. You'll be complaining about the heat in no time...

I'm on Facebook ... "friend me!"

It was one of our recent beautiful spring Saturdays the weekend of March 16th.  I got all my ‘honey do’s’ completed and cleaned up the bike – one of my ‘do’s’ instead of the ‘honey do’s’.  And Marcia came out to help on the cleaning of the bike.  When we finished she said “well now that it is all cleaned up we need to go for a ride.”  Of course I agreed and said, “Where to.”  She didn’t have a place so I said “we’ll just go west and see where we end up.”

We started out on Hwy 70 otherwise known around here as Denmark Highway and came to Denmark and Hwy 321.  321 is otherwise known out of Columbia as Savannah Highway.  I believe it is because prior to I-95 it was the primary road to Savannah out of Columbia.  321 runs alongside of a railroad track for much of the way through Bamberg County.  It travels through lots of farm country with fields and chicken houses (love that smell, you can always tell when you are near).  We came to the community of Govan.  A community of around 67 people and about 30 homes.  But you can still see the remnants of when it was a major artery to towns further south.  We passed one neat old cement block gas station with the canopy out front  that had long since been vacated with no glass in the windows and the roof sagging.

We next came to the larger community of Olar which has around 237 people and has a convenience store/gas station, and more abandon buildings.  The weather was great, sunshine but with growing clouds that Sunday brought the rain, and in the low 70’s.  Just a great day to ride.  We passed a number of other riders all going the other way.  After Olar 321 junctions briefly with Hwy 301 until it goes through the community of Ulmer, with 102 people and about 40 homes.  But is the home of one of the great southern redneck traditions of mud bog racing.  A few times a year Ulmer populations swells during the mud bog races to over 1000 people.  A very popular activity.  But for us is the home of my friend Dean (Dean runs the Disability Board in Walterboro (Colleton County)).  He was just finishing cleaning up after the ice storm and had 3 huge piles of limbs and debris piled up for future burning.  Ulmer must have been quite a stopping place in its day because there were 3-4 old abandon buildings that looked like old truck stops and/or restaurants.

Hwy 301 is a 4-lane but not limited access and goes on to Barnwell to the south and Bamberg to the north.  We stopped for a few photo opportunities in front of some of the old buildings and headed back to Bamberg about 18 miles.

Not far out of Ulmer I noticed the buzzards on the road and mostly in the median with a few in the road and on the right side.  The noise from the bike moved most of them away and they took off except for a couple.  I’ve never thought of buzzards as intelligent birds and from this experience I see nothing to change that impression.  I backed off the gas a bit because I know you can never tell where they are going.  One took off away from us and the other started out right across the road.  I moved over as far as I dared and he still was not gaining much altitude and at the last  moment I admit I ducked.  After I ducked I thought well that isn’t going to make Marcia very happy to have this buzzard in her face, but it was a natural reaction.  I did hear something lightly on my helmet, not sure what part of but dirty bird it was, and hollered to Marcia through the intercom to duck.  She was already tucked down behind me and didn’t even see how close it was, already afraid he wasn’t going to make it.  My next fear was that the experience was going to scare the …. out of him like it nearly did me and of course would end up right behind me in my wife’s lap.  In the end fortunately nothing more than a scare and a laugh for us.

We did decide in Bamberg to stop at the House of Pizza for dinner and then head home.  We made it home as the sun and temperature were dropping fast. It was one of those beautiful sunsets with the clouds clearing out alleys of light all centering on the descending sun.   All in all another great day to be together and enjoying the ride – buzzards and all.


Hello all my fellow bikers in The Carolinas! Calendar Girl here with all the latest information on some upcoming events for this weekend and on into next week. The weather is finally being more reasonable so we can get out and celebrate spring. This is another week is full of fun events to attend so be sure to check out the full calendar and get to one in your area.

… And, remember, this is just a taste of what's on our full online Event Calendar so make sure you always check for all that's happening ... and get your ride on!

Some Events 'n Rides for Saturday, 012 April, 2014

10th Annual Multi Chapter CBA Spoker Run - Salisbury, NC

Bikers for Kids Fun Run Poker Run - Wilkesboro, NC – This will be the first event for the newly formed ‘Bikers For Kids’ organization based close to Winston-Salem, NC. My friend George created the soon to be non-profit group because he saw clearly that there are holes in the agencies that help children. Bikers for Kids is raising money to help children with clothing, medical supplies, and school supplies when parents just can’t do it. The poker run will encompass 120 miles and will hit some major establishments all with this year’s goal of funding scholarships for rising high school seniors. George says, “As a disabled veteran I’m not in this for the popularity, I just want to be the guy who helps kids. I’m paying it back because I was there, I understand, and I want you to understand also.”

Poker Run for Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation - Fuquay Varina, NC

4th Annual Pony Express Charity Ride - Fayetteville, NC – Now this is a ride you don’t want to miss! I talked with Anor Burnside who is a member of the Buffalo Soldiers M/C out of Fayetteville, NC. They are raising money through a fun ride from Cape Fear HD 50 miles away to another HD and back again for a huge party with food and raffles. I asked him about the name “Pony Express”. He said, “We love to get out and ride out bikes, but we ride for a purpose and that is to educate people about the Buffalo Soldiers and the role they have played in American history protecting the Pony Express system.” He continued, “Last year we raised $5000 for our charities which provide turkey dinners at Thanksgiving and presents at Christmas for underprivileged. To this day we are still riding to protect.”

Special Olympians Poker Run - Greenwood, SC

These and lots more can be found on The Carolina Rider online EVENTS CALENDAR!

2 event reports this week ...

  1. United Cerebral Palsy of SC Ride for Life by Ron Lofts

  2. Bike Nites around The G-S by Lester

Ride for a Life 2014 - United Cerebral Palsy of South Carolina

April 5, 2014

The day started off as a beautiful day. The few of us from last year couldn’t help but remember the 40 degree and pouring rain.  But this year was a beautiful upper 60’s and sunshine to start and warmed up to upper 70’s before the day was through.  Most of us were riding in short sleeves by the end of the day.  We met at the parking lot of the UCP office and day program in West Columbia near the hospital off Exit 110 of I-26.

The turn-out was triple that of last year – which was only 6 – with around 30 bikes. They had many people come by to pay for a registration but not ride, this year and last year.  This being only the second year it is growing and we hope will continue to grow.  UCP-SC operates a number of group homes in the Columbia area and a wonderful day program for people with Cerebral Palsy and related disabilities.

While waiting I met Jimmy Boone, 1st office in the Southern Cruisers Riding Club (Midlands Chapter 048.) He has some great pictures and is a real photographer and has a wonderful website of his rides with his group.  They are great and you can see even more of the ride at his website.

We were led out by a group called the Madhatters, a local riding club that has made CP one of their primary organizations to do service for....

Bike Nites in the Greenville-Spartanburg Area

Spring was here !!!!! I’m not sure where it went, but it was here last week and I (we) rode out to a couple of bike nights. One at Quaker Steak & Lube / Harley Davidson of Greenville and the other at Chief’s Wings and Firewater.  Unfortunately, they are both on the same night, so they are competing for the same customers.  QS&L /HD was a big crowd as usual. I would say a couple hundred bikes. People everywhere, the restaurant was full as well as the Harley Store.  Groups of people catching up on the winters activities and others walking around looking at the bikes. There was a live band on stage there in the parking lot, but while I was there they were on they were between sets, so I cannot tell you anything about them.  I ran into a few friends there, spoke to several people, and ate a quick bite there at QS&L.

We were seated at the worst table in the place.  I know it is the worst table because the management there has recognized it as being the worst table by hanging a sign over it stating as such. The table comes with a 10% discount. That is how bad it really is...  

Putting together Motorcycle Events

I'm happy to be involved in the creation and planning of a number of bike events over the year. I've got one project going on right now with the Shriners and Met Life as they design a really great Fall ride. Yep, I said FALL and we've been working on this already for at least a month. Successful charity rides aren't overnight possibilities. Sure, there are a few amazing folks out there who have pulled off fairly successful events in a short period of time but that's usually because they are tied into at least one large riding organization and at least one substantial corporate business sponsor who supported it and helped get the word out and the work done. Most of us have to work hard and long to spread the word, put the pieces together, and make it all happen. That's why I suggest at the minimum 6 months prep time and at least a couple months of marketing. Flyers should be ready and in shops, hands, calendars like ours as well as personal ones, and magazines such as ours too no less than 8 weeks ahead of the event.

You see how it is. The Events Calendar is really full right now. Beginning with this past weekend, just as April hit, the schedule is full in every corner of The Carolinas. Lots to choose from - and that's a good thing for riders but not necessarily such a great thing for event organizers since most people won't do more than one event in a day. Getting on folks' calendars early is one key.

I received the flyer to the left this week from a fellow MSF instructor who used to live in Charlotte and now lives in Western NC. He shared it and I made sure to include it here because it's being put together by a high school kid. Apparently the young man is doing this for his senior project. Wow! I applaud him and encourage those who can to support his efforts and cause in some way if you can...

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