Some 170 motorcycle riders from the Boozefighters Motorcycle Club Chapter 101 and other local motorcycle clubs took part in a toy ride on December 16 for Hillsides, a Southern California mental health and foster care charity. The riders rode from Santa Clarita to Hillsides’ main campus in Pasadena with several truckloads of holiday toys for the children and families Hillsides serves.
“This is the fourth year the Boozefighters motorcyclists and their friends have supported Hillsides during the holidays with a toy run, and we are so appreciative of their generosity,” said Hillsides President and CEO Joseph M. Costa. “It is incredible to see so many riders, some who come as far away as Northern California, take part in what has become one of the highlights of the holiday season for us.”
Several staff members and children in residence at Hillsides were on hand to meet the riders. Hillsides board chair Jesse Cripps also attended the event and welcomed the riders to campus.
The toy run was created by actor Robert Patrick, who most recently starred in the CBS series “Scorpion.” Patrick learned about Hillsides through his local Episcopal church, St. Thomas the Apostle in Hollywood. Hillsides has its roots in the Episcopal Church, having been founded in 1913 by an Episcopal deaconess, Evelyn Wile. Besides helping Hillsides, Patrick is a devoted advocate for veterans and has traveled around the world with the United Service Organizations (USO) visiting troops. While Patrick was unable to participate in the toy run this year, he has for the previous three years and his wife and two children were able to attend.
The Boozefighters Motorcycle Club was formed by ex-servicemen returning from World War II and is one of the oldest motorcycle clubs in the nation.
The gifts collected through the toy run will be distributed to some of the nearly 17,000 children and families Hillsides serves throughout Los Angeles County. Without groups like the Boozefighters and friends, many children and families would face the holidays without gifts.
Hillsides, with its affiliate Bienvenidos, is dedicated to healing children and young adults, strengthening families, and transforming communities through quality comprehensive services and advocacy. Headquartered in Los Angeles, the agency serves nearly 17,000 children and families in Southern California throughout more than 40 sites, including school-based mental health offices in Los Angeles, Pasadena, and Baldwin Park. Foster care and adoptions services are offered in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, and San Bernardino Counties. To learn more about Hillsides, please visit www.Hillsides.org. Visit Hillsides on Facebook @hillsideschildren, on Twitter @Hillsides, or on Instagram @HillsidesPasadena.