PHILADELPHIA, May 23, 2014 — Motorcycle riders and non-riders alike from across the Mid-Atlantic revved their fundraising engines for the 27th annual Ride for Life event to raise a total of $1,093,433 to fuel the fight against muscle disease in support of local families served by the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
"For nearly three decades, Harley-Davidson and its dealers, riders, fans and H.O.G. chapters have been passionate about providing independence to kids and adults affected by muscle disease,” said Ride for Life Event Coordinator Tracy Hausknecht. “Ride for Life is a tradition that continues to exceed our expectations year after year, and we are grateful to all who support this important event that raises awareness and funds that will help MDA save and improve lives of the families we serve.”
Hundreds of motorcycle enthusiasts rumbled into Bethlehem, Pa. May 3-4 for the nation’s largest charity motorcycle ride hosted by the Eastern Harley-Davidson Dealers Association (EHDDA).
All motorcycle brands were welcome at the two-day event that kicked off at the ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks. Participants enjoyed live music, courtesy of several popular local bands that performed throughout the day, entertainment from the American Motordrome Stunt Show, and silent auctions, raffles, and food and beverage vendors.
Day-one festivities were highlighted by an exclusive concert from rock icon and Poison frontman Bret Michaels. The crowd jammed out to the band’s energetic performances of classic rock covers and Poison hits such as “Nothin' but a Good Time,” “Talk Dirty to Me” and chart topper “Every Rose Has Its Thorn.”
Former MDA National Goodwill Ambassador Bryson Foster, 13, made his second appearance at the legendary event to thank Ride for Life participants for the incredible difference they’re making for families like his. Bryson also got the chance to test his inner rock star when Michaels invited him on stage to sing "Nothin' but a Good Time” and help close the show for hundreds of excited fans.
Michaels, who was moved by MDA’s lifesaving work that helps kids like Bryson, took his support beyond the Ride for Life event to help MDA families even further the very next week in Los Angeles where he shot a special performance for the 2014 MDA Show of Strength Telethon at the Hollywood Palladium.
The Telethon airs on ABC stations nationwide Sunday, Aug. 31, 9/8c.
Ride for Life events carried on into May 4, beginning with the parade of motorcycles which passed from the Penn State-Lehigh Valley Campus to the SteelStacks ArtsQuest Center, where Ride for Life festivities resumed until closing ceremonies later that evening.
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Ride for Life is the nation’s highest-netting Harley-Davidson fundraising event, and has raised more than $19 million since it began in 1988 with the goal of helping MDA save and improve the lives of children and adults affected by muscle disease.
The money raised from the event stays in the six-state area (southern New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and northern Virginia) where it will benefit MDA families affected by muscle disease by providing funds for life-saving research, clinical care and support services which include sending children served by MDA to a weeklong, barrier-free MDA summer camp.
The Muscular Dystrophy Association is the world’s leading nonprofit health agency dedicated to saving and improving the lives of anyone with muscle disease, including muscular dystrophy, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and other neuromuscular diseases. It does so by funding worldwide research to find treatments and cures; by providing comprehensive health care services and support to MDA families nationwide; and by rallying communities to fight back through advocacy, fundraising and local engagement. Visit mda.org and follow us at facebook.com/MDAnational and @MDAnews. Learn more about MDA's mission by watching this video.
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