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Bed Race big success at Cape Bike Night

By Staff | Oct 2, 2011

The Big Kahuna Bed Races and Parade once again added some extra laughs and fun to one of the scheduled Cape Coral Bike Nights as the crowds cheered on their favorite team on Saturday.

It is the second year that the annual fund raiser, which is in its seventh year, was held in conjunction with the downtown Cape event. Bob Hamilton, one of the organizers and a member of the Ronin Riding Club, explained that the race and parade are a precursor to the Bikers for Babies RIDE in November.

“It’s a big motorcycle venue,” he said of Cape Coral Bike Night. “And this is one of our pre-events to bring awareness to our main event.”

The 11th annual Bikers for Babies RIDE will take place Nov. 6 at 11 a.m. Proceeds from the ride, along with money raised from the bed races, benefit the Southwest Florida Chapter of the March of Dimes.

There were 10 teams racing for the title of 2011 Big Kahuna Winner this year. Beds were entered by Around the Clock Fitness, Coca-Cola, the Chrome Divas, Harley-Davidson of Fort Myers, Harley-Davidson of Naples, Hooters, NOS Energy Drink, Racks and Tails, vitaminwater and Yucatan Beach Stand, a Fort Myers Beach restaurant.

Awards also were presented to the Best Decorated, Most Entertaining and People’s Choice beds.

Prior to the races, the beds were paraded along Southeast 47th Terrace for spectators.

Hamilton explained that each team has four pushers and a person who has to ride on top of the bed. The bed has to have a minimum of a twin-sized mattress and can be constructed out of any materials.

“That’s their bed,” he said. “They can decorate it any way that they want.”

Last year, the race raised $8,000. Combined with the bike ride, about $150,000 in total was raised.

Hamilton said organizers hoped to match last year’s race proceeds, or even raise more money.

“We’re always hoping for more,” he said.

Gloria Fischer and Mark Ulatowski dropped by to watch the races again this year.

“We love it,” Fischer said.

“Anyone can do it,” Ulatowski added.

Asked about how last year’s races compared to this year’s event, both liked the new set up.

“It makes this venue a lot bigger,” he said.

They also liked the idea of combining the fund raiser with the Cape Coral Bike Night.

“It softens Bike Night a little bit,” Ulatowski said.

“It’s perfect because it’s a family atmosphere,” she said.

For Cape resident Anna Benkert and her husband, Saturday was their first Cape Bike Night.

“To get out and talk to people,” she said of why they came out. “It’s very nice.”

Benkert said she had never seen a bed race before and they were headed over to check it out.

“I think it’s a real good thing,” she said of the fund raiser.

Prior visitors to Daytona’s Bike Week, the couple noted that the Cape event measured up.

For more information about the 11th annual Bikers for Babies RIDE, or the Southwest Florida Chapter of the March of Dimes, visit the website online at: www.bikersforbabiesflorida.com .

The mission of the March of Dimes is to help mothers have full-term pregnancies and research the problems that threaten the health of babies. For information, visit: www.marchofdimes.com.