Here comes Santana, right down motorcycle lane: Bad Pennies bring Christmas joy to 22 families
Partnering with United Way of Dickinson, the Bad Pennies R.C. helped deliver Christmas meals and presents to a list of those in need this holiday season.
With the help of “Santana” and a group of motorcycle enthusiasts, more than 20 families around Dickinson are going to have a joyful Christmas. Over the weekend, the Bad Pennies R.C. rolled into town in their party bus, surprising families with a large box filled with food, topped with presents for young boys and girls at each home they stopped at.
Partnering with United Way of Dickinson, the Bad Pennies helped provide food and gifts to 22 families with their annual Christmas giving event.
“This kind of stuff makes somebody’s heart feel rather well,” Bad Pennies Treasurer Jerry Storjohann said. “... Stuff like this definitely puts a big smile on your face. When you see a smile on the kids’ face when Santa walks in with some presents and the boxes of food, and (for) a lot of kids, boxes of food are more important to them than the presents that we’re bringing to them. And that just tells you that, ‘Yeah, we’re at the right place.’ We’re taking care of the right people that really need some help, and it’s tough times especially around the holidays.
“If you can give back to your community, it means more to most people than anything else.”
For Vice President Mike Sticka, it’s the southwestern North Dakota communities that help support the South Heart riding club .
“(We had) Ion Field Services, Dunn County Fair Association, State’s Avenue Vet and our big one for this event was Nodak Insurance with Dallas Nelson,” Sticka said. “And we sell our gear throughout the year, we do bike runs. This is what we do; Thanksgiving and Christmas is what we work all year for, and a lot of us throw money out of our pocket too. But any time you see a support shirt or a hat, the profits we make go to this.”
Dressed as “Santana,” Road Captain Tanner Rixen shared a similar testament that the holidays sometimes impose challenges for families.
“Especially with COVID this year, everyone’s struggling this year a lot and I think this year means more than the last few years because we’ve had such a rough year with everything that’s been going on,” Rixen said. “So this year is a big important year to help as many people as we can.”
At each stop, those riding in the party bus hopped off like tickled children on the last day of school to greet each and every family on the list while others, who rode behind, gathered the gifts and boxes of food. Where door steps were covered in snow, a Bad Pennies member would grab a shovel from the bus and clear the entryway — revealing a softer side to the leather clad motorcycle enthusiasts .
“... We’ve had that time where we’ve been in a place where we need a little bit whether it’s just a little bit or a lot of bit. And we’ve fallen on really hard times or slightly hard times, there’s always a time where help is necessary,” said Trevor Asher, who’s known as “Trash” to his brothers. “Growing up, there’s some of us who didn’t have very much and if we had something like this, it’s just that kind of leg up that can help anybody get ahead in life. Everybody knows how important it is to work hard and to try to get where you are, but nobody does it alone. So we like to think that we provide that beautiful help for our community and we want to get them where they need to go.”