An invitation – Lockyer Branch
The 22nd Annual Ipswich Toy Run.
For the past 21 years, Lockyer Branch here in historic and beautiful Ipswich Qld, has been holding this annual event and has seen it grow (and wane) to only grow again. The last 5 years has seen this successful event attract in excess of 850 motorcycles (confirmed) and an associated audience of well over 1300. Toy Run’s seem by default to have pillions in huge numbers. The once a year pillion takes this opportunity to be a part of the biggest biking event on the calendar in South East Qld.
The Lockyer Branch is extremely proud to be the exclusive holder of this event and though the branch has, like many, decreased in size, it has retained a stalwart bunch of people that continue to prepare for this event. Many months of careful planning, coordinating and husking for donations to attract the audience goes on behind the scenes by these dedicated volunteers. Just a sample of what is achieved is the following: 55kg’s of sausages, 60kg’s of bacon (cooked by the local Salvation Army fresh on the morning), a completely filled 4 tonne pantec Salvation Army truck of toys and goods for the needy kids, over $25,000.00 to be disbursed and finally a very tired & satisfied group of people at the end of the hectic 7 hours. YES, that's about it, after months of planning and organising, it is over and done with in roughly 7 hours.
The entire monetary gain is shared between the Salvation Army and UCARF. Yes, you did read that correctly in that ALL the monies raised goes to our two nominated charities. Not a red cent is retained or used by the Lockyer Branch or it’s members and that is something we are understandably proud of. So, it is no surprise to see the Lockyer Branch with our red & blue shirts featuring at the yearly awards bestowed on branches for contributions to UCARF. We have the honour of having 2x Jo Dearnley Awards and 5x Good Joint Awards as recognition to our efforts and for those that have attended the AGM’s where these were presented, you would know my ability to talk about our Toy Run held on the 2nd Sunday of December. The awards would be more but it seems we are a bench mark for others to surpass and the past two years we have been pipped at the post so to speak but whereas in reality the winner is UCARF with a lot more funds to enable further research into Rheumatoid Arthritis and continue Stephen Dearnley’s (Old #1) vision to find a cure. I along with many others prefer to have cures found than an award on a shelf.
The other charitable side is the TOYS. What would a Toy Run be without them? Just a run I suppose!! Toys are strapped, tied, roped in all ways to ensure they reach the end (the occasional one doesn’t!) venue where they are placed (tossed) into the Salvation Army truck and we hope the in 2018 we again achieve toys being placed into the front cabin as the van is FULL and won’t accept any more in the back. Not bad for a ½ days work. The bikes/trikes/sidecars/spyders etc turn up highly decorated and resplendent in tinsel and toys and then leave naked (the bikes that is) as most also leave the Christmas decorations for the Salvo’s to pass around.
The Annual Toy Run is an institution around Ipswich and the surrounding South East Queensland biking fraternity and very importantly the ULYSSES CLUB BRANCHES. Not one of our local branches (@20) are not represented by most (if not all) of their members. It is also fully supported by the local community, local Council, State Members of Parliament and very importantly, Queensland Police Service. With special thanks to the QPS, we are able to have a continuous moving parade along the entire 15-kilometre route that we travel, weaving in and out of suburban streets. Once we leave the Brassall Shopping Centre and make our way to the Ipswich Showgrounds, we do not stop for red lights or signs etc. For 9 years now, I have LEGALLY run RED lights and Stop Signs as the police are too busy stopping everyone else on the roads.
If you are in the vicinity of SE Queensland on the 9th December 2018 (or any of the 2nd Sunday’s of December), the members of the LOCKYER BRANCH cordially send you an invitation to come along and join in. Riding as part of the parade is free and not restricted in any way but if you wish to contribute $20.00 you get a patch (or pin) to mark the day and a snag & bacon on a slice of bread. Oh, you will also get a feeling of doing something enriching for those that need it, especially around Christmas Time and being a part of Ipswich’s history in riding in one of the biggest groups of motorcycles outside our own Ulysses Club AGM Parade.
Written by Foggy
on behalf of the Lockyer Branch cause no one wanted to do it 😊
Aka Ian Winter
UC# 53026 TM# 59
President - Lockyer Branch
Lockyer Branch – Annual Ipswich Toy Run