National Bikers Roundup 2015
By Jana E. Pye, Editor, firstname.lastname@example.org
“You have got to see this pretty bike,” said Judy Rogers, the office manager of the News and Press.
For those of you who don’t know, our newspaper office is directly across the street from a gas station, and as with all small cities, something out of the ordinary tends to grab your attention.
Such was the case when some of the members of the Big Dogg Riders MC (motorcycle club) stopped to get some gas at the U.S. Mini Mart on Wednesday, August 5 on their way to the National Bikers Roundup motorcycle rally at the Darlington Dragstrip.
Bobby Randolph, who drives the beautiful bike that caught Miss Judy’s eye, a white Honda Goldwing motorcycle – known as a Trike – with a matching trailer, told the News and Press that he and his wife and friends drove down from their homes in the Shendendoah River area of Virginia.
“In all, we have three Goldwings, two Harley Davidsons, and a Yamaha,” said Randolph. “We all just have fun riding together.”
Charles Crawford drives a Pearl Yellow Honda Gold Wing; Otto Harris drives a Sun-Glow Red Harley Davidson; Teresa Crawford drives a Cobalt Blue Harley Davidson, and her husband, Nathaniel Crawford, drives a Wineberry Honda Gold Wing; and Jerry Williams drives a white Yamaha Trike.
“My husband and his brother, Charles, started riding together, and then brought me,” said Teresa Crawford. “They actually taught me how to ride.”
She is the only female in the group that rides her own bike- the rest of the women ride with their husbands.
The club participates in fundraisers in their community, and their logo is “Giving Back to the Community,” along with the great logo of the “biggest dog we could find” to affix onto their leather vests.
Jerry Williams, who drives the white Yamaha Trike, actually customized his motorcycle and converted to a “Trike” on his own. “It was a lot of work, I’m really happy with it.”
The friends have attended other rallies in the past, and a few enjoyed one last year in Mississippi.
“This was only six hours away, so we decided to come on down,” said Randolph.
The group booked their hotel rooms in Florence back in November for the event.
The Big Dogg Riders M C is a non-profit organization that was established June 2, 2013 with only eight members from the start (seven full members and one associate member). They now have 10 full members and no associates.
“We wanted to give back to the community, instead of just riding and not doing anything.” said Teresa. “We have a monthly meeting and we pay dues to the club, which we used to give back to the community.”
In 2013, the club gave a Thanksgiving meal to a family of five; in March of 2014, they organized a bike ride for one of their member’s granddaughter who was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer; donated money to a club in Newport News, VA for the loss of one their members (President); donate funds to community members who suffer the loss of a loved one; and provided Christmas to a needy family of five along with their church, Ebenezer Baptist Church.
Members include: Jerry Williams-President; Samuel Williams-Vice President; Nathaniel Crawford-Road Captain; Teresa Crawford-Secretary; Robert Randolph-Treasurer; Charles Crawford-Road Lieutenant; Spence Howard-Sergeant-At-Arms; Cynara Clifford-Event Coordinator; Richard Williams-Chaplain; and Charles Brown-Event Coordinator.
“Only five of the club members were able to come to the National Bikers Roundup this year,” said Teresa. “This was the second one for my husband Nathaniel and I, we also went to the one in Tunica, Mississippi. Our experience in South Carolina was wonderful, and everyone was so courteous and friendly. The demo rides at the Harley-Davidson, to all of the vendors that were there it was so much to choose from and the fellowship with our brothers and sister clubs. We enjoyed the event so much that we went back even in the pouring down rain!”
Mobile users, please click gallery for more photos: National Biker Round Up Rally 2015
Prior to the event, Billy Walker, National Bikers Roundup Chairman from Kansas City, spoke to the News and Press on Tuesday August 4th, just as the tents were going up for the Harley Davidson display and vendors were entering the Darlington Drag Strip.
“This is our 38th Roundup,” said Walker. “So far, everything has come together. Harley Davidson comes each year. They are not a sponsor, but they are one of our major vendor contributors to the Round Up.”
Walker, who doesn’t like to have his photo taken, said that he knows that the area will be happy by the Round Up. “We’ll bring a lot off money to your area,” said Walker. “We always do. The food drive we do will really enhance this area. We collect money and food…and 100% stays in this area. The food pantry will be out here to collect the donations.”
He urges people that are wary of motorcycle clubs to look at their website: www.NBRKCMO.com.
Groups like the Big Doggs MC of Virginia were one of many that are professional people out to have a good time with their friends, and meet other clubs from across the country. The event is held in different areas of the nation to allow participation from other clubs, unlike Sturgis that stays in one place each year.
In light of the recent shootings in Charlotte, many local residents and local law enforcement took the rally very seriously. As a result, the police were out in full force.
Reading their Facebook page, organizers from Oklahoma asked them to please return.
Based on the positive feedback from businesses and individuals in the county, chances are that Darlington will, too.