motorcycles

Over 1,200 bikes pack Verdi Club as part of Bob Probert Ride

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Verdi Club parking lot was a sea of motorcycles Sunday morning as the sixth annual Bob Probert Memorial Ride roared into Amherstburg.

The first stop on the ride was the Verdi Club with motorcycles streaming in from both directions along Texas Road to enjoy some food, beverages and fun before heading off to CBG’s in Colchester for the second stop.

Roughly 1,200 motorcycles packed the Verdi Club June 26 for the Bob Probert Memorial Ride.

Roughly 1,200 motorcycles packed the Verdi Club June 26 for the Bob Probert Memorial Ride.

Other stops included the Sandbar Waterfront Grill in Puce and the final stop in Walkerville.

Dani Probert, the wife of the late NHL player who played for the Detroit Red Wings and Chicago Blackhawks, didn’t have a final total of the money raised for this year’s event but told the RTT at the Verdi Club they had surpassed $600,000 to date since the ride began.

“Things are looking really good,” she said. “The sponsors really helped. Without all of the fabulous volunteers, this wouldn’t have happened.”

All proceeds will support the Cardiac Wellness and Pulmonary Rehab Program at Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare.

“The weather is awesome,” said Probert. “Big Bob is looking out for us. This is just amazing.”

Believing it was a great way to pay tribute to her late husband, Probert was thrilled that an estimated 1,200 motorcycles were part of this year’s ride.

“It’s wonderful to see all the smiling faces. Everyone is happy,” she said.

Bob Probert died of a massive heart attack July 5, 2010 and Dani said this is a way that family, friends and the community can give back. All proceeds stay local to assist with cardiac care.

“It doesn’t get any better than that,” said Probert.

One of the 1,200 riders in this year’s Bob Probert Memorial Ride was Mayor Aldo DiCarlo. Much like the Motorcycle Ride for Dad last month, DiCarlo got to ride up near the front of the line as the ride came into Amherstburg.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo stands on a small wall near the entrance to the Verdi Club to photograph the sea of bikes that came to the Bob Probert Memorial Ride Sunday. Approximately 1,200 motorcycles were involved.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo stands on a small wall near the entrance to the Verdi Club to photograph the sea of bikes that came to the Bob Probert Memorial Ride Sunday. Approximately 1,200 motorcycles were involved.

DiCarlo was clearly impressed with the turnout for this year’s Bob Probert Memorial Ride.

“This is insane,” he said. “They filled the parking lot handlebar-to-handlebar. That’s a lot of bikes.”

DiCarlo said that now that he is recognized more than he was before, more people comment to him about the town and he receives mainly positive comments.

“Everyone’s got good things to say about Amherstburg,” the mayor stated. “They love the town. They love the stops.”

Having the first stops of both the Motorcycle Ride for Dad and now the Bob Probert Memorial Ride be in Amherstburg is important, DiCarlo added, as the riders tend to stay together for the first few stops before people start bypassing stops and not staying as closely together.

Ride for Dad thanks Legion, plans 2016 return

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Royal Canadian Legion Br. 157 received recognition for being a part of last spring’s Ride for Dad last Tuesday afternoon.

Officials from the Windsor chapter of Ride for Dad stopped by the Amherstburg Legion to present a plaque as a way of thanking them for being a stop on the fundraising tour. Amherstburg was the first stop on the May 24 ride and will be the first stop once again on the May 22, 2016 ride.

Cealia Gagnon, who attended Tuesday’s presentation with fellow Ride for Dad representative Larry Burgess, said this year’s Ride for Dad raised over $73,000 for prostate cancer awareness and treatments. Over 850 riders participated.

“We’re hoping to surpass all of those numbers next year,” said Gagnon.

The Motorcycle Ride for Dad recognized the Legion last Tuesday for its participation in the 2015 event. On hand for the presentation were Cealia Gagnon and Larry Burgess from Ride for Dad, Legion president Dennis Purdie, Legion event organizer Kevan Carroll and Mayor Aldo DiCarlo.

The Motorcycle Ride for Dad recognized the Legion last Tuesday for its participation in the 2015 event. On hand for the presentation were Cealia Gagnon and Larry Burgess from Ride for Dad, Legion president Dennis Purdie, Legion event organizer Kevan Carroll and Mayor Aldo DiCarlo.

Burgess noted that riders enjoyed the trip into Amherstburg with Ride for Dad officials also being grateful for the welcome they received once they got here. The Amherstburg Fire Department brought their ladder truck with a large Canadian flag to help greet the participants.

“The Legion did a phenomenal job getting 850 people through here in an hour,” said Burgess.

The Ride for Dad officials thanked all of their supporters and extended invitations for next year, including having Mayor Aldo DiCarlo as a celebrity rider. DiCarlo, who has recovered from injuries sustained in a motorcycle crash in September, said he will consider the offer.

“The town definitely wants to thank Ride for Dad for including Amherstburg in the route,” said DiCarlo, who noted his father had prostate cancer.

“On a personal note, I think a lot of people have been affected one way or the other.”

The mayor added the event is creating awareness, something that is very important.

“Hopefully we keep getting people checked. Early diagnosis is the key,” said DiCarlo.

Royal Canadian Legion Br. 157 president Dennis Purdie said he just had his prostate removed and was thankful to the Ride for Dad committee and the Legion for working together that day.

“The Legion is more than willing to help,” said Purdie.