The MP National Motorcycle Relay (MPNMR) billed as the “World’s Longest Annual Motorcycle Relay Ride” stopped at the Aylmer Legion, August 18, for breakfast before continuing their ride east.
Launched in 2009, the MPNMR is a fundraiser which has raised over $200,000 for various charities, including Children's Wish Foundation, Military Families Fund, and the Military Police Fund for Blind Children.
“The goal initially was to build camaraderie and friendship, to get out and motorcycle with like-minded people,” said Major Edwards, Chair of the event.
“Then we decided this is a good opportunity to raise money for children. The first couple of years we raised money for the Military Police Fund for Blind Children and the Military Families Fund. Then for the Wounded Warrior Fund. We’ve decided to give all the money we raise to the Fund for Blind Children, and that’s where our focus is now.”
In its seventh edition, the coast-to-coast ride has garnered more support over the years and more riders as Ms. Crowley, Volunteer Legion Rider Communications Coordinator, explained. “This ride gets interest from various veterans groups, including our new group, the Legion Riders, who now support the ride every year. We get a very diverse group who join for either the national ride or for just one province or two, as we go across Canada,” Ms. Crowley told the Bulletin.
Major Edwards is pleased to see the ride grow and the interest it is generating outside the MP family. “Next year’s Chairman is a Petty Officer from the Navy”
The ride, which started August 3, will wrap up in Gander, Newfoundland. “We stop primarily on military bases across Canada. We don’t just follow the Trans-Canada Highway; we go up to Cold Lake, Alberta, to Charlottetown, P.E.I., and into Halifax. The whole ride is about 10,000 kms,” noted Major Edwards.
Over the years, the MPNMR started stopping in Aylmer, and the Legion on Bancroft Street has welcomed them every year.
“The Aylmer Legion has always been a big supporter. It has become an official stop to kick-off the MPNMR ride towards the East Coast and we provide breakfast for the motorcyclists,” said Ms. Crowley. Three new riders from Aylmer joined the MPNMR as they headed towards the East Coast. “If you’re interested in riding with us, we would love to have you come out with us. You don’t need a military affiliation at all,” Major Edwards advised the Bulletin’s readers.