JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) – Hundreds of motorcyclists hit the road in Johnson City Saturday morning for a good cause.
This weekend the local chapter of the Southern Cruisers Riding Club hosted its 17th annual rally and benefit ride in Johnson City.
A ride spanning all of the Tri-Cities region’s most beautiful towns took off Saturday from the Holiday Inn at 10 a.m.
Many participants came in from other chapters to get involved, including from other states and even other countries.
“We have three countries represented, four provinces out of Canada, twelve states and 44 chapters, and couple from Sweden. It’s a diverse group,” said Rob Fraley, First Officer for the Southern Cruisers Riding Club, Chapter 77.
Chapter 77 is based in Johnson City and serves all of the Tri-Cities region.
Brenda Whitson, Executive Director of Visit Johnson City, said in a statement that motorcycle and car tourism brings great economic benefits to the region each year.
“We welcome motorcycle rallies and car clubs to experience everything Northeast Tennessee has to offer and are proud to partner with our local Southern Cruisers Riding Club. The Tennessee Ridge Runner Motorcycle Rally is a prime example of utilizing the Southern Dozen to bring visitors from around the world to Johnson City, engage the community, and support charitable causes,” said Whitson.
The profits from registration for the ride all benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. and the life-saving work of its doctors to help children and their families as they battle cancer.
“It’s a drop in the bucket to an organization the size of St Jude, their budget is unreal. But it’s dollars they did not get if people here did not support it,” said Fraley.
Since the Johnson City chapter’s founding 17 years ago, organizers say 83,000 dollars has been raised to benefit St. Jude.
The worldwide organization has around 30,000 members and has gifted more than 3 million dollars to the children’s research hospital.
Fraley estimates around 300 people gathered Saturday for the benefit ride and post-event after.