Saturday, October 27, 2012
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Salt Creek A.B.A.T.E. raises money doing one of their favorite things

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[October 27, 2012]  NEW HOLLAND -- Thursday evening several members of the Salt Creek A.B.A.T.E. gathered at Slackers Bar & Grill in New Holland for a meeting with Michael Baird of the American Cancer Society. The purpose of the gathering was to present Baird with a check for $3,066 -- money raised at their Oct. 6 Cancer Run.

According to Salt Creek member David Awe, the October run was a huge success and something that the club hopes will become an annual tradition.

The run started in the morning in New Holland. The bikers took to the road, traveled to Cantrall, Kilbourne, Forest City and Mason City during the day, and ended back in New Holland. The group made several stops along the way, enjoyed a great day doing what they all love and raised money for a good cause at the same time.

"It was pretty cold that day, so we were surprised that so many turned out," Awe remembered.

However, judging by the many photos that the club provided, it was a bright day with the fall colors just starting to peek through the woods. The route they took, which included travels along the river in Mason and Fulton County, would have made for a perfect setting for a fresh-air ride.

Awe said that when the group made it back to New Holland, they spent the evening with live music and plenty of good food and fun with their friends and fellow bikers.

Awe said that having the live music at the end of the day was a big part of the draw in raising the funds for the American Cancer Society. That was made possible by Slackers and their neighbor across the street, the Village Pub.

"Slackers and Village Pub paid the cost of having the bands come, and that really helped a lot," Awe said. For the evening, the music was provided by the Rusted Guns and the Stranger Danger bands.

In addition to live entertainment, the group hosted a half-and-half raffle. Awe said the winner of the raffle was Dave Renfro. He won a total of $383 and gave it all back to the club for their cancer drive. Awe said that was a pretty good chunk of money and it was great that Renfro wanted to give it back.

Another fundraiser that evening was a silent auction with items donated from a variety of sources.

And finally, Awe said there was a raffle for a whole hog plus processing that was donated by Herman and Eric Schwantz of Schwantz Farms in Lincoln. As Awe talked about this, another member of the club chimed in, saying there were so many entries for that raffle that they couldnít fit all the names in their drawing drum. Awe remembered and elaborated, saying they ended up having to dump the names in a large box so they could get them all shook up for the drawing.

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Awe said the Cancer Run was something that was important to the A.B.A.T.E. club because they did it in honor of two very close friends. He remembered Hank Podbelsek and Bob Rankin, who fought hard battles with cancer. Awe said everything the club did was in remembrance of them.

A.B.A.T.E. is an acronym for A Brotherhood Aimed Toward Education. The club has several events during the year and raises money to support different community activities. Awe said the next thing coming up would be the A.B.A.T.E. toy drive.

The toy drive is an effort to collect new toys for local children in need and is something the club does every year. Awe said they are currently talking about doing something new this year but havenít firmed up their plans. What they would like to do is host an event where the members can personally give gifts to the children.

In addition to the Christmas toys, the group also hosts a big Easter event for kids each year, and they do a St. Jude fundraising run each year.

When everyone was gathered for the photo op and check presentation, those in the group included several members of the Salt Creek club; Andy Evers and Jim Rankin, owners of Slackers; Ladonna Perdue, owner of the Village Pub; Tom Hyde, club president; Christi Gesner, club activity director; and Baird. Gesner presented the check for $3,066 to Baird on behalf of the group.

Afterward Baird said: "We are very appreciative of the Salt Creek group and their contribution. It sounds like they had a fantastic event. And, we look forward to partnering with them going forward in the fight against cancer."



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