My soul was so looking forward to an 11 - 12 hour round trip brain clearer as I watched the sky, waiting for a break to pack my saddlebags.

That break never came.

It howled, with great big fat raindrops that would have meant everything I needed to pack would have ended up wet.  The cage it was.  I waited until I couldn't wait any longer and I threw everything into the car and off I went.

I was supposed to be at Blackjacks Roadhouse in Nisku at 7pm for the volunteer meeting, that did not happen. I made it for 8pm.  Thanks to Kevin O'Connor from the Wetaskiwin Sheriff's department - he handled most of the questions for me.

Saturday morning dawned cold, drizzly and miserable.  I headed over to Blackjacks from the  Airways next door to be greeted by the smiling faces of Catherine and Rob who were on time for their 6:45 am shift to park motorcycles.

Krysta Shields and Michaela Wallace, my fellow board members for the Ride for Mom were smiling in spite of Mother Nature not understanding that this day was all about honouring Moms and helping them get the help they need when things go south.

When mom is happy, healthy and whole, the children generally thrive and so do others who are around them. Domestic violence hurts everyone it touches.

It's important that we stamp it out and the Ride for Mom is all about giving those who need it most, a voice.

Domestic violence doesn't just touch women and children, it also touches men and many seniors, however women suffer most often.  Sadly, blood doesn't always mean we are kind or patient.

The Ride for Mom might have gotten off to a soggy start for it's inaugural ride, but as my good friend Gail Day reminded me, we put together an amazing event that is filled with wonderful volunteers and has for a first time event garnered major support and recognition and no amount of rain could change any of these facts.

My brothers from the 3rd C.A.V. Frezenberg Unit along with a member of the Regiment MC took lead of the 32 bikes, and they even found a back seat for me to ride on.

Now I don't like riding pillion much these days, but it did give me the opportunity to do some real action shots of the motorcycles with my camera and helmet cam both working in harmony!

We got to our first stop in Wetaskiwin, the Reynolds-Alberta Museum, and were greeted by the Alberta Sheriffs. (We were all given plastic sheriffs badges, as sheriffs helpers)  The ladies from the Victim Services office were out giving out hugs, candies and domestic violence brochures..

Too often, the Sheriffs, EMS, RCMP, Victim Services, Fire - these are the people who have to deal with the ugly and sad side of humanity; domestic violence. Violence between people who are supposed to love each other.

After some hugs, some laughs and some water, we were off to our next stop, Route 13 and the Chop Shop in Camrose.

There were were again greeted by the Alberta Sheriffs, but instead of ladies from Victim Services we had 4 young folk from the 3068 SALH RCACC (Camrose Cadets) helping out.

Tara and Jamie had the entire parking lot decked out. Fiona's Coffee & Gifts was on hand with the Belt Drive Betty Blend of Coffee (We had some Bags devoted to Ride for Mom on hand).

Then there was a wonderful BBQ, Monster energy drinks, Williams Custom Bikes and of course the cool clothing, accessories and jewelry carried at Tara's shop.

The riders all got their coupons, same as at the first stop. These coupons would be used later to see who won all of the incredible ride prizes we had been donated!

When we were all ready to leave, we were pleasantly treated to the City of Camrose police department blocking traffic so we riders could move safely through the intersection! That was so wonderful!

When we got to Tofield, not only were their RCMP vehicles blocking traffic, but an entire block in front of the library and administration offices was blocked off.

Here we were treated to water and home made cookies (gluten free were even available).

Cookies, brochures on shelters and domestic violence and hugs were the hottest commodity going and everyone's hearts seemed to fully engage with this cause.

After having some fun with the Sheriffs van, we were escorted out of town and the highway blocked for us and we were on the final leg back into Blackjacks Roadhouse.

Krysta and Michaela along with their trusty support man Tyler were ready for us.

After a few short speeches, the draws were made and people started to dissipate.

It was an amazing day when 32 souls braved the cold bitter winds and participated in what history will show was the first of many rides.

Thank you to all of the volunteers and sponsors who made it possible for 32 people to bond in a special way.  The Ride for Mom, I was so honoured to be part of this first one.

Special shout out to Kevin O'Connor, The Brunch for Broads, Red Knights, 3rd C.A.V., Victim Services, Alberta Sheriffs - you key volunteer groups were the backbone of this entire event!

There are so many individuals and businesses to thank, without your support we could not have done what we did....

Krysta, Michaela, Tyler, Clarence, our major sponsors; CTV, Heritage Harley-Davidson, Harley-Davidson of Edmonton, Klondike Insurance, Blackjacks Roadhouse, Airways
 Hotel and Belt Drive Betty Media.

Please visit to see the names of the other sponsors...
I speak for myself, but I am sure the rest of the board would agree with me when I say that I am blown away by the support and generosity of so many for this inaugural event.

To see more photos of the event visit my photo gallery at:

Inaugural Ride for Mom


The Ride for Mom Edmonton and Area supports: Edmonton Domestic Violence Shelters Engage (EDVSE) which is comprised of representatives from six Edmonton-based organizations that advocate for survivors of domestic violence, for their organizations, and for the sheltering response: La Salle, Lurana Shelter Society, WIN House, Wings of Providence, Sage Seniors Safe House, and the Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters.

Grande Prairie, should we do our own Ride for Mom here next year?  I think we should, who is with me?

Belt Drive Betty,
Editor & Rider

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