There is a movement occurring in the Rim Country that definitely deserves our unbridled support.
It centers on a benefit drive to help 2-year-old Laytin Matthews of Payson.
He is blind and is in dire need of a specialized walker that will teach him how to walk.
Katie Parks, an officer in the Justice McNeely Foundation, hopes to raise the money needed to purchase the walker at a Motorcycle Charity Run on June 4.
Registration begins at 9 a.m. at The Spur in Star Valley, and poker cards will be sold for $15 per hand and $25 per couple.
The Spur will be offering drink and breakfast specials.
After a morning start at The Spur, the run route travels to what Parks calls, “three other stops that take you to the top of the beautiful Rim and back” before ending at the Sportsman Chalet in Strawberry. There, Bryan Higgens will provide live music from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Also at the chalet, an auction and raffles will be held.
If the upcoming motorcycle run post-party is anything like the quad run held in the fall in Pine, the day’s end celebration will be a hoot.
At the Chalet, cash prizes will be awarded to the best and worst poker hands.
Of the run profits, 90 percent will go to the foundation to help purchase Laytin’s walker.
The other 10 percent will go to the Modified Motorcycle Association of Arizona for biker education.
The Justice McNeeley Foundation was established in 2004 to earn the $8,500 needed to buy Justice, then an engaging, witty 5-year-old who suffered from spinal muscular atrophy, a motorized wheelchair called a Go-Bot.
Justice is Katie Parks’ son.
The fund-raiser was an overwhelming success, Justice got his Go-Bot and organizers were so happy with the results they decided to continue the foundation adopting a motto of “Help Us Help a Child.”
Since the inception of the benefit, the fund has doled out more than $35,000 to help pay the medical expenses of needy Rim Country children.
“Dental, hearing, glasses, orthotics — anything they need, we try to provide,” Justice McNeeley Fund chairman Chuck Collins said in the fall just prior to a quad poker run that has been the chief fund-raising activity for the foundation.
“We are a 501-3C nonprofit organization and all our employees are non-paid volunteers.”
For those who’ve never participated in a poker run, they are more than a good excuse to ride your motorcycle, quad or horse.
The event begins with riders checking in and receiving a score sheet and route map. Typically there are five checkpoints along the route and each rider will draw a card at each stop.
After a card is drawn it is noted on a score sheet and the rider moves on to the next checkpoint. Like a game of poker, the person with the best hand at the end of the ride is declared the winner.
To register for the upcoming motorcycle run or more information go to: www.justicemcneeley foundation.org/home.