On June 18, Tamela Rich will launch a cross-country motorcycle ride as part of a larger ride taking place this summer called Women Who Ride Conga. Organizers of the ride are encouraging women riders across the United States to join in by starting their own mini-rides. Tamela will be gathering riders along the way as she passes through towns forming a conga line and will ride with them to the final meeting destination of Shell, Wyo., for the Women Who Ride Conga Rally on July 14. The ride and rally will raise money for breast cancer research.
Tamela’s kick-off is taking place at Motorcycles of Charlotte in North Carolina. The dealership is throwing her a send-off party called Kickstands Up. Riders who join her are asked to decorate their motorcycles in something festive and pink.
People instantly know you’re doing something for breast cancer when they see your decorated bike, Tamela said of last year’s ride. People from all over the country asked to get their pictures with me and my bike, and this gave me an opportunity to ask for donations to the cause and to hear how breast cancer had touched their lives. Everyone has a story about a friend, a family member or a co-worker, because breast cancer touches one of every eight women.
The pink bra Tamela will strap across her bike this year was selected from the entries in a bra-decorating contest at a fundraising event. Motorcycles of Charlotte Owner Mark Engel says that for each decorated bike that shows up for Tamela’s send-off party on June 18, he will donate $25 to DRUMSTRONG, a Charlotte-based cancer fundraising organization. At the end of Tamela’s trip in July, DRUMSTRONG will divide the monies raised between Carolina Breast Friends and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
We’re delighted to support the first day of Tamela’s ride, which we call Kickstands Up, said Mark. Anyone who wants to come down to our clubhouse at 9 a.m. is welcome to join us for a Continental breakfast and to wish the riders well in their journey through the mountains to Robbinsville, N.C. The bikes pull out at 10 a.m.
Tamela’s route has her traveling west to California and then north to Canada before heading south to Shell, Wyo., for the Women Who Ride Conga Rally. In addition to raising money for breast cancer causes, she will be interviewing cancer survivors for a book called Full Throttle: What You Can Learn About Life from Women Who’ve Faced Cancer.#8221; Christina Shook, photographer and author of the book Chicks on Bikes, will be along for part of the ride to photograph Tamela’s interview subjects.
Last year, at 48 years old, Tamela decided to learn to ride a motorcycle. Shortly after, she traveled 7,500 miles across the country as part of the 2010 Women Who Ride Conga Rally. Tamela will be keeping people updated on her progress via her blog (listed below) as well as her Facebook page.
The Conga Ride started in 2008 when Tannis “Flo” Fuhr, a rider from Canada, bought a motorcycle from Donna and Jerry Palladino, owners of Ride Like a Pro in Hudson, Fla. She decided to invite her Internet friends to ride along with her as she rode the motorcycle home to British Columbia from Florida. Many riders joined her along the way, escorting her some 6,000 miles across the continent, hence the name Conga Ride.
To learn more about the Women Who Ride Conga Rally, visit these links:
Women Who Ride Conga Web site
Women Riders Now story on the history of the Women Who Ride Conga Ride
Info on Tamela’s ride and where to join up with her
19 thoughts on Nationwide Womens Ride Gears Up
Here is the Conga website gowitheflo.org and here is a smaller one for what is taking place in Shell, Wyoming. https://sites.google.com/site/congarideforracks/So hard to plan a route. Grab some friends and start your own little conga line to meet there. Here is our FB group planning on who can jump in where and for how long… Dress up yourself and your bikes and come Conga with us!Genevieve thanks again for what you are doing.
Good article! I’m disappointed I will not be there this year again with you but I know you will raise lots of $$$$…Ride safe my friend!
Way to go Tamela! Excellent article, and for a great cause. Thank you. Can’t wait to meet you in Shell. Conga … conga … conga!
Great article. Counting the days till my husband and I leave P’cola for Shell, WY. We rode with Flo in 2009 when she came through our area on Conga II.
Is there a set route for the ride with a time frame schedule? With the known route other riders could join at various points or plan to ride a portion of the ride if they have limited time. Thanks.
You can hook up with Tamela on her route listed on her Web page. The link is at the bottom of this article. You can also visit the Conga main page Web site, also listed at bottom of article. Details on Flo’s ride will be there. Right now, I know of no other central location for the various rides coming in at this point. I will continue to keep this story updated so keep checking back.
Great article. I will help get the word out and although not with you, will be there in spirit!
Right on! Great article. Anyone can Conga anywhere or join an established line such as Tamela’s. Hope to see riders in Shell, Wyoming mid-July. Bring your hearts and your checkbook.
Love it. I would love to be a part of it but just moved and started new job so not able to. I will definitely remember this event. Keep on riding. Let the wind carry you.
Excellent article and yes, Flo and these women riders are some of the most amazing people I’ve had the pleasure to meet and ride with from our last three Congas. I will be meeting up with Flo next month out in Wyoming/Colorado after this Conga IV, sharing laughs, lots of love and memories to be made all the while we’re kicking Cancer to the Curb! Come join us!
I love that this has a flare for fun, yet keeping it very real. We’ll share the story and keep in touch. Way to go Tamela!
Great article and best wishes to you Tamela on your trip. Can’t wait to see you and all the other Conga riders in Shell. As a survivor I am so impressed with every bodies efforts to Kick Cancer To The Curb.
Great article! I hope more women (and men aka cabana boys) join in along the way for this great cause. Have a safe trip and I’ll be with you in spirit! 2010 was the trip of a lifetime. I hope 2011 is bigger and better!
Would be an honor if you might surprise us and come Conga a mile or two!
I’m considering it since Shell is so close to me. Let’s touch base as we get closer. Would love to ride with you guys!
I think this is great! Count me in when your in my area…GA/TN! Ride safe ladies.
Great article. Hopefully more will start their own conga line and meet us in Shell, Wyoming! helping us Kick it to the Curb! See you soon Tamela. Ride safe!
Thanks for starting this ride Flo. You’ve started a movement. Hopefully all women riders will want to get involved. Keep the conga line going!