Good weather, good times and lots of motorcycles make for a successful 27th Annual Port Alberni Toy Run, president Lloyd Herzog said.
The two-day event attracted more than 850 motorcycles, which is up from 700 that took part last year. And it raised approximately $54,000 in cash and collected $25,000 worth of toys.
“It went awesome, it was a good ride,” Herzog said.
The biggest challenge on the day of the ride was the weather. The clouds seemed to open up letting sunlight when the rise started, then close up again as it ended.
“We hoped that the rain would stay away and it did the day of the ride – it was an awesome feeling,” Herzog said. “It was a bit damp on Sunday when riders went home but Saturday sure made up for it.”
The memory that stands out the most didn’t so much involve the ride itself, but the machinery that makes the ride. “Everything went smoothly and it went off without a hitch,” Herzog said.
Groups such as Young Life, the skating club, wrestlers, sea cadets and navy league were among the several groups that helped out. “Bread of Life served the chilli and hot dog and Girl Guides served at the pig roast,” Herzog said.
Some new vendors were added that patrons seemed to like, and there was a new twist on the traditional pig roast.
“Pete’s Mountain Meats did it for us and he did a heck of a job,” Herzog said.
Patrons paid $4 per bun and the roast raised $800 to $900. “I think there were only about 10 meals left and the pig weighed 200 pounds.”
Glenwood was a beehive of children’s activities and no station was idle. “Both clowns and Santa looked really, really busy with all the kids,” Herzog said.
The oldest rider in the event was 78 years old and the youngest was four years old. “He rode on the back of his dad’s bike,” Herzog said.
The 850 riders came from B.C., Alberta, Washington and Oregon. The rider from furthest away came from Saskatchewan, Herzog said.
“They can’t say it enough: it’s the community support here that brings them back.”