By Susan Johnson
The motorcycle club Fire and Iron Station 53 will hold a “Guns & Axes” benefit ride Saturday, July 5. Registration begins from 8 to 10 a.m. at Boone County Fairgrounds, Route 76, Belvidere, Ill. Kickstands will be up at 10 a.m. sharp. The escorted three-hour ride ends at Kegel’s Harley-Davidson, 7125 Harrison Ave., Rockford. Registration fee is $20 per rider, $15 for passenger, and includes food, which will be served at Big Papa’s Restaurant inside Kegel’s. The cost of the meal is included in the registration fee.
Marcia Foley, committee member who also worked on the previous benefit for OSF Burn Ward and Burn Camp, explained that the club name refers to the firefighters and police officers who lost their lives on active duty. If any of these public servants is injured or killed, the money raised goes to a fund that is divided among the surviving families. They will receive a portion of the fund to help them get back on their feet until their pension or Social Security takes effect.
This is the second annual benefit, a partnership among Fire and Iron Station 53, the Public Guardians and Blue Iron Motorcycle Club. Fire and Iron Station 53 is the firemen’s group, and Blue Iron and Public Guardians are police officers.
Foley said they were pleased with the success of the benefit last year. “To us, that was huge,” she said. “We started from nothing. It just feels good to pay it forward.”
Just like last year, Kegel’s is happy to host the motorcycle club after the ride. Live band music (two bands), ice cream and a bike show will be part of the festivities. Trophies will be given out in three categories — Baggers, Custom and Trikes. Another major player is Lock and Lean Precision Motorcycle Riding LLC. These are police officers who put on a show on stunt bikes, and people put money in contribution buckets after the performance.
Other upcoming events
July 19: Fire and Iron Station 53 will host a local burn ride to benefit Burn Camp and the OSF Burn Ward, starting from Rascal’s Bar and Grill in Loves Park. Registration is 10:30 a.m. to noon, and ride begins at noon. Return to Rascal’s around 3:30-4 p.m. This event includes a late lunch with music. Cost is $20 per biker and $15 per passenger. Cost for just late lunch is $10 if you’re not riding.
Aug. 23: Fire and Iron Station 53 will host a benefit ride for Burn Camp and the OSF Burn Ward starting at Poopy’s Bar and Grill on Highway 84, Savanna, Ill., and ends at Poopy’s between 3-4 p.m. Registration starts at 9 a.m. and ride begins at 11 a.m. Cost is $20 per biker and $15 per passenger. Live music will be featured.
From the June 18-24, 2014, issue