The Sounds of Autism
AZ. Correspondent, Tracy “Smiles”
Photos by “Smiles”
Sundays are always a great day to ride, and this Sunday was no exception. The sun was shining bright and the temps were delicious in the 70’s and 80’s throughout the day. Pre-rally days for Bike Week 2013 were in full swing and several charities got to reap the benefits of such a perfect weekend. One of these charity rides was the Ride & Rock with Mogollon (killer country rock band), sponsored by Bob Beyer and Independent Motorcycles (and in part by Chuck Franklin Law), benefiting The Sounds of Autism.
Bob saw the opportunity for fellowship, and to ride, eat, rock, plus raise money, all for the cause of autism awareness. Our biker community is very well known for stepping up and participating in charity rides, usually with staggering results, this time was no different. In this instance the charity run titled Rock & Ride with Mogollon was created. Bob’s friend, Mike Galla, has an autistic child named Steven, who is 11 years old and is violently autistic, meaning he has a tendency to hurt himself. Mike and Steven were the inspiration behind the creation of Ride & Rock. Bob also saw an article in a previous edition of Quick Throttle about an autism run in the LA area. Noticing that we really didn’t have any rides focusing on this issue out here, he found this to be the perfect opportunity to introduce one. Bob spent tireless hours in the months leading up to the ride, putting together all the stops, the donations, getting the band on board and everything else a charity ride involves. This was accomplished also with the tremendous help of Two Gals Events & Promotions. The end result was astounding success and memorable fun for everyone involved! There were well over 300 people who showed up to ride and rock for autism awareness!
The Sounds of Autism was founded in May 2012 by Cricket Barrientos. With a mission of integration, their goal is to get autistic children and their families connected into their communities using “love, support, and modern technology”. And it all started with a seed. Yep, a single white sesame seed stuck to the inside of a coffee cup. After a course of several more incidents of having white sesame seeds seemingly come into the path of Cricket, and eventually a lemon seed, she realized this had a much deeper meaning than a coffee cup that may not have been cleaned very well. It was a path of recognition that the seeds were growing, that she had figured out the message of the seeds, and that the time was now to spread the word about Autism. Cricket also has an autistic son named Landon, so the issue is near and dear to her heart.
Moving out to Arizona was prompted by a chance encounter with a DJ of a Christian radio station. The suggestion was made to start a non-profit organization for the awareness of autism. After sharing some funny stories about Landon, and realizing that a big part of the problem was other people’s fear of autism, she realized that she could reach a lot of people through education and awareness of this disorder. That is when the Sounds of Autism was born. (Check out her page on Facebook Growing with Autism (7 Seeds).
This ride included stops at three east side biker friendly venues. Jolie’s in Chandler was our first stop, and the wonderful people there had a great breakfast for all the riders to fill our bellies and satisfy us for a full day of riding, music and fun. Next stop was the famous Dirty Dogg Saloon in Scottsdale, where Jack Estes and his beautiful bartendress’ were in full force and awaiting our arrival with refreshing beverages all around. A few of these lovely ladies even had some bar top entertainment for us all to indulge in, (gotta love the Dogg in us all!!) Next stop was Baseline Sports Bar in Tempe, home of the lovely Baseline Babes!! With PLENTY of room to accommodate all the bikers on this ride, the cooks and babes were spot on their game with delicious food and ice cold drinks all around!!
Finally, the end stop came full circle, right back where we started, at Independent Motorcycle. The beard brothers had fantastic entertainment lined up for us in the form of Mogollon! Mogollon is one of the Premier Country Rock Entertainment groups in the West. They play just about anything, from Hank Williams to Pink Floyd to their original written songs, and they have a HUGE following all the way around. It’s always awesome to see people getting up and doing a little boogie shuffle to the sounds of good rock music!! What a perfect way to end a perfect day for a cause that deserves way more recognition that it currently gets. I can’t wait until next years ride!
Tracy “Smiles”, Just Because