Most of our rides end at a restaurant but not this ride. This early morning February 2016 ride went somewhere else, somewhere special. The three hour ride started out like any other Sunday ride but you could tell it was different by the bits of pink here and there; a scarf, a headband, a shirt, a vest, hell there were even pink boot laces.
The route led by Head Road Captain Steve P. encompassed some of the county’s most scenic roads, Highway 79 and 76, Lilac Road, and Couser Canyon Road. Over 40 riders enjoyed clear roads, beautiful cloudless skies and cool breezes, biker nirvana.
One bike went down.
Got right back up!
The ride ended at Michelle’s Place, a donation funded facility offering women and their families affected by cancer emotional, educational, and if qualified, financial support in Temecula, California. Find a lump and don’t have insurance, they work with a network local medical providers to get the tests required for a diagnosis. Their vision is “No one will face cancer alone.” Many of the volunteers are breast cancer survivors themselves, they understand and are there to help. Every woman that comes through the front door in need is met by an advocate.
Michelle’s Place was started in honor of Michelle Watson by her parents, family and friends in the year 2000 to provide much need breast cancer support center in her community. Michelle wanted to educate those not yet touched by the disease that early detection raises the chance of survival to 95% or more. Something she discovered too late.
Our group was greeted by three volunteers who opened the doors just for us. We were guided through the rooms and given a peek at what the place had to offer. There were hats and scarves, drawers and drawers of wigs and bras, racks of bathing suits and camisoles, and a lending library filled with books on everything from medicine to exercise to diet. They even have a hair stylist, a Reiki therapist and Yoga classes, all volunteers, and all available free of charge to cancer patients.
Jerry G., our Head Photographer and Social Media Officer, became involved with Michelle’s Place during his participation in Reality Rally, an annual event started by reality TV star Gillian Larson of Survivor Gabon. The Rally was her way to “Pay it Forward” with the proceeds benefiting Michelle’s Place. Jerry initiated and helped organized our first ride there in 2012.
This year with the help of Linda A., our Ladies of Harley Officer, Jerry G. and so many others, a $1,000 was raised to help Michelle’s Place help women in need.