COVID-19 is hitting our community and world quite hard right now. Our daily lives have been changed in every way as we all figure out how to navigate our families and livelihoods through this global pandemic.
The moment our government initiated restaurant industry service closures to dine-in and bar service, I could immediately see how devastating the situation was going to become to local businesses. I knew I needed to do something quickly to support local businesses – especially the bars and restaurants that are central meeting places for riding and charity biker events.
About two weeks ago, I gathered a group of local motorcycle focused business leaders and community figures in order to discuss ways we could best support motorcycle businesses through these strange times. This team has been virtually meeting almost daily to discuss ways to drive community support and is made up of myself; Chere Martin of Rider Justice; Andrew Campo of META Magazine; Laurie Montoya of Colorado Rider News and BikerDown; and Rob Tompkins of Dirty Dogs Roadhouse. We have also received valuable input from other vested community members including Jason White of Fay Myers and Dave Burke of Aces Motorcycles Denver.
We created Colorado Riders Care with a goal to support:
- Motorcycle focused businesses negatively impacted by social distancing and government shutdowns or restrictions and
- Individuals in the riding community who are negatively affected by loss of income
While all of us are impacted in some way, we also know that there are a number in our community who are still stable and wanting to help. We intend to share ways that those who can, can help others. We have named this overall effort Colorado Riders Care and communications are being shared via the Colorado Rider News website.
Certainly, encouraging people to order take-out and delivery from their favorite biker bar was a start.
But to take it one step further, we needed to connect people who needed help with those wanting to help. So, we created the #2Wheels4Meals campaign. In short, we have created a system where anyone can donate a meal to someone in need through their participating restaurant of choice, which creates immediate income for that restaurant, and a place where people who are in need can get fed.
Without batting an eye, Rob and Mark from Dirty Dogs Roadhouse were on-board. As of this writing, anyone can donate a meal by purchasing a #2Wheels4Meals voucher for $10 each. Those vouchers are held at Dirty Dogs and anyone in need can call in to see if there are vouchers available and claim a meal. When there is a surplus of vouchers, we will coordinate with Dirty Dogs to make deliveries like we did on Sunday, March 29th. That day, 85 meals were delivered to needy individuals, first responders, and workers at a VA Hospital.