By Susan Monteleone
HIGHLAND August 17, 2004 The Town of Highland will be helping out in just a small way for the upcoming Sullivan County ATV Associations Annual Poker Run, but it is an important way.
Town of Highland Highway Superintendent Norman Sutherland recently asked the town board members to grant permission for the ATV Association to use the lot at the towns senior center on Route 55 for parking for the event, which will be held on Saturday, September 11.
The organization came to me and asked if they could use the lot behind the senior center for parking, Sutherland said. Parking is tight in the area and I truly did not see any problems with it.
The ATV Association is planning to start the benefit Poker Run at the Eldred Preserve, which is located along Route 55. The riders will then proceed by trails through the woods to Fosterdale for a luncheon and then back to the Eldred Preserve.
Association spokesman Ed Houman explained that the event will benefit local children who have health issues.
The Sullivan County ATV Association is now in its sixth year of helping children who are seriously ill and the family just does not have the means to pay for the medical expenses, Houman said. Last year alone, we raised $55,000 to help families and we are hoping to raise even more this year. This year the event will be benefiting Gracie Hillriegel of Callicoon and Aiden Hanley of Yulan.
According to Houman, the associations ATV event started very simply.
A couple of us went to an event like this a few years ago that a fire department was sponsoring to raise funds and we thought we could do the same thing here to help children who are sick and in need and six years later here we are, Houman said. I do feel that one of the things we try to do besides help the children is to show the public the good side of ATVs and not the bad. Our participants are all checked over to make sure they are safe and no one below the age of 12 can take part in the event. We try to promote the safety of the ATVs with this event.
Houman also noted that the way the organization decides on which children the event will benefit is simply done through speaking with local doctors, reading local newspapers and by community members informing the ATV Association members of anyone who needs assistance.
The event to benefit Hanley and Hillriegel will begin at 7 a.m. on Saturday, September 11 at the Eldred Preserve. The cost to participate is $65 per rider, which includes breakfast, lunch, door prizes, poker run prizes and a buffet dinner at the Eldred Preserve that night.
A raffle to win a 2004 Polaris Sportsman 500 HO ATV will also be held at the event.
Registration for the poker run ends on Tuesday, August 31.
For more information or to participate, please visit the Sullivan County ATV Associations Web site at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 796-2422.