Toys For Tots Ride
December 2, 2006



On Saturday, December 2nd a group of Riders represented the club in the annual Toys for Tots Motorcycle Rally.  Art Nicholls, Steve Clay, Tina Clay, Pete McKeighan, and Scott & Michelle Mullin were joined by 3 of Artís buddies and girlfriends from Gray Forrest (the Sweet Tater Gang) for a group of 8 motorcycles.  The morning started out real cold Ė the first cold front of the day blew in the day before and at 7:00am it was 36 degrees!  Time to bundle up in leathers and chaps.   We meet at Artís place and munched on his home-made goodies and coffee, getting warm and letting the sun come up.  From there we rode to Javelina Harley, and met up with a group of riders we estimated to be about 80.  A marine HUMVEE led the procession down I10 Ė taking over the left lane for a few hundred yards.  It was cool to see that large a group at once.  The procession went for about 30 miles, to the Billy Blues at 281 just north of downtown.  There we deposited our toys, ate free breakfast tacos, coffee, and beer, and warmed up a bit.  We were one of the last groups to leave, and headed up 281 on the way back to Artís.  On the off-ramp to 1604 disaster struck for Pete Ė his rear brake caliper literally fell off, and jammed in between the rotor and the wheel, locking his rear tire up!  Pete rode it out like a champ, pulled it over to the side, and no one was hurt and there was no altercations with nearby cars.  Good karma was ours after the good deeds we had done earlier!  Peteís BMW was in a big hurt, but it was good enough to get it to a safe place (but the rear wheel/tire/brake/swing arm are toast).  Steve and Tina rode home to get Pete a trailer, and the rest of us headed our separate ways.  Good thing Pete has insurance.  We did not get any photos on this ride, unfortunately, but the Research Riders were well represented. - Scott Mullin