UPDATED Sept. 9, 2009:
The Curve Cowboy Reunion silent auction raised $25,000 for Thunder Valley CDC! The Tanka team would like to thank all of the CCR riders, and especially those who visited with us at Tanka HQ. To read more about how Thunder Valley intends to use the proceeds: Thunder Valley: Making a Way for the Youth to Follow
With engines purring and chrome flashing, seven riders from Curve Cowboys Reunion (CCR) cruised up to Tanka Headquarters Thursday, Sept. 3, as part of the group's annual motorcycle ride.
With a membership of more than 18,000, this year 320 CCR bikers are participating in the ride hosted at the Best Western Ramkota in Rapid City, S.D. Rapid City is located at the foot of the Black Hills and is home to some of the most scenic rides in the country.
While the CCR bikes might be eating up high-octane gasoline, we had the opportunity to share our own potent fuel, Tanka Dogs! After indulging in a high-protein healthy lunch, Mark K., our assistant director of marketing, took the well-travelled bikers on a tour of Tanka World Headquarters.
Luxury touring at high speed
CCR riders tend to prefer the more high-end bikes made by BMW, even though riders of all makes and models are welcome. These are bikes are from BMW's Luxury Touring line, boasting a 1200cc power plant. As massive as the super-posh bikes are, they are built for performance as well with top-end speeds up to 140 mph. Some riders that participate come from all parts of the world.
Bikers with a heart of gold
Curve Cowboy Reunion is a 501c3 non-profit organization. Each year, the group chooses a local charity as a benefactor of funds raised for the CCR Ride and proceeds from its silent auction. Since 2000, CCR has raised more than $115,000 for local charities since.
This year, the group's 2009 charity is none other than Thunder Valley Community Development Corp., Tanka's partner in the e-Cafe. We will give you all an update from this year's auction as soon as we have the results.
The bikers who visited Tanka HQ
We had a few moments to visit with the bikers, and we thought we'd share a little information about them:
George and Judy Brown, who live on the outskirts of Philadelphia, are participating in the ride for the first time. On their way to meet up with other CCR members for the annual ride, they traveled through five states - Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wyoming.
Lee-Ann and David Fick, from Annapolis, MD, live along the water and have an oyster operation. David, a professor at a local university, said that when their ride is over he estimates that they will have traveled 4,000 miles. This is their second year for the ride.
The last bikers I talked with were George Hoy and Peggy Clark. They rode out from Sioux City, Iowa. George works for Union Pacific Rail Road, and Peggy is a mental health therapist. The couple's second year on the ride, George and Peggy said the group meets yearly and the locations are chosen randomly. After the conference, the couple plans to visit Yellowstone, WY.
The seventh rider was David Tilsen, Mark K.'s uncle, who has participated in the ride for many years.
To check out CCR's online community: Curve Cowboys Reunion
For more on Thunder Valley: Thunder Valley CDC