Bikers bring Christmas cheer to annual toy run | Photos, video

Although damp conditions resulted in fewer participants taking part in the annual Orange Toy Run on Sunday, a new motorbike club joined in the Christmas charity ride.

Riders from the Classic and Cafe Racer club took part in the toy run for the first time and joined members of the Ulysses Orange branch.

About 41 riders took part in the ride from Cook Park, to the Robin Hood Hotel, via Summer Street and the Northern Distributor. 

Toys donated from the riders were donated to the Salvation Army’s annual Christmas gift appeal.

Ulysses Club Orange Branch president Lester Davis said toy runs have a long tradition with motorbike clubs in Australia and there will be a similar toy run held in Molong.

“We’ve got toys from riders, pillions, families and friends,” Mr Davis said. 

Along with providing Christmas presents to children who would otherwise miss out, the toy run was also a chance for members of the Ulysses Club and the Orange Classic and Cafe Racers to get together.

Orange Classic and Cafe Racer president Steve Doherty said the group has been running for a while but has only officially started this year for riders of classic motorcycles, and cafe racers, which are a British style of motorbike.

Orange Salvation Army Captain David Grounds welcomed the donations.

Captain Grounds said last year there were 80 families who signed up although Captain Grounds said it is sporadic from year to year.

“Some years we get lots, some years we don’t get many, it’s random,” Captain Grounds said.

He said nominations for this year’s appeal opened on Friday and so far about a dozen families have signed up.

Along with donations and the toy run, presents will be provided through the Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal. 

“It’s a great opportunity for us to share with people who otherwise might miss out on Christmas … it’s a great opportunity to help them,” Captain Grounds said.

The appeal is for children and teenagers aged from 0 to 18 and this year the Salvation Army asked the toy run participants to remember teenagers and gift cards were welcome, especially for older recipients.

“We always need more gifts for older children, teenagers are the hardest to buy for,” Captain Grounds said.

The Salvation Army asks about children’s interested during assessments so children can receive gifts they would enjoy. 

Families at risk of missing out on Christmas are urged to nominate as soon as possible by phoning the Salvation Army on 6362 1870 and nominations can be made until the week before Christmas.