By P.J. DiPentino
On Sunday, the Realities for Children motorcycle rally came to town in roaring fashion. This marked the beginning of a newfound relationship with the Town of Berthoud and 2,400 northern Colorado motorcyclists. The Realities Ride is an annual event that raises money for abused and neglected children. This year, Berthoud was added to the 100-mile route stretching along the Front Range. As an anchor for the inaugural Youth Fundraising Festival, the Realities Ride did not let us down.
Booths from local youth groups were mobbed as the first wave of motorcyclists rolled into town. Split into two groups, the first riders arrived at about 11 a.m. Lining the streets around Fickel Park, the arrival was jaw dropping to say the least. Entrepreneur youth groups offered everything from coffee and donuts to T-shirts to the riders. Fickel Park was set up with a stage and local bands Snake Alley Driver and Filtermist rocked the house.
The local BMX race team, Rocky Mountain Racers, organized and provided all the volunteer services. RMR moms worked the beer garden and concessions while kids helped with the set up and clean up and fathers were in the street wearing bright yellow vests, organizing traffic and acting as ambassadors.
The entire Town of Berthoud’s involvement was a pleasure. Every department we worked with acted in the most professional manner, and the results were amazing.
The Berthoud stop for the Realities tour came to life when my wife Lexi and I were looking for help with the Berthoud BMX facility. About two months ago, in a chance meeting at the Derby Grille, I met Craig Secher from the Realities for Children organization. Their mission is to help abused and neglected children in Larimer County. He explained how he was in Berthoud looking for a potential stop for the upcoming rally.
As we continued the conversation, I soon became very interested in the opportunity to take on the challenge and, without hesitation, my wife Lexi gave the thumbs up. We then met with Berthoud’s BMX race team who agreed as a group to take on this great cause. Often meeting twice a week, the RMR families quickly got to work.
Committees were established and families took over assignments. The Berthoud Recorder newspaper came onboard sponsoring the event and the next seven weeks were spent planning and plotting everything from liquor licenses to parking. The RMR group never let up, and their fearless leader Lexi came through with an awesome event. In true teamwork fashion everybody involved in this project showed what a great community we live in.
After the day was over and we were cleaning up, I heard Lexi talking with Erich Phillips from Reflections for Youth. RFY is a nonprofit community based residential youth treatment program for children 11 to 18. Their group had set up a free booth at the Youth Fundraising Festival. Phillips related a story how a leather-clad biker walked up to his booth and pulled out a one hundred dollar bill and handed it to him. The rally rider just smiled and said “Give it to the kids,” and walked off.
<p>More than 2,400 riders took to the streets of Berthoud Sunday as part of the Realities Ride, benefitting abused and neglected children.</p>
<p>The event attracted riders from across the Front Range and beyond.</p>
<p>Live entertainment and refreshment booths were part of the draw.</p>
<p>Fickel Park neighbors made a lawn party of the Realities Ride events. “We love it!” said Kathy Lubberstedt, who has lived in Berthoud for four years. Pictured from left, Dixie Nelson, Nicole Lubberstedt with baby Emily, Kathy Lubberstedt and Keith Lubberstedt.</p>