Lehighton’s 18th Annual Bike Night was a huge success, with thousands of bikers attending the event and hundreds of cars flooding into the Mahoning Drive-In Theater Saturday. The oppressive heat and humidity didn’t stop the bikers from enjoying the great food and music. A Bucks County man identified only as “Big John” said he’s been coming to the event for many of its 18 years. “I support the Gypsy Sportsmans by having some Jambalaya. They do a great job supporting the Lighthouse.” The gathering attracts both charitable organizations and charitable people. Bikers attending this event added to their well-deserved reputation. Bike Night is all about a down-to-earth crowd interested in having some well-earned fun. The biker games drew a lot of interest again this year with the “slow drag” and beer barrel drives.
Bike Night didn’t fail to make Lehighton a destination. Several businesses reported record door traffic Saturday, especially those offering air conditioning and ice cream. The heat index was over 100F for much of the day. Area hotels were booked solid both Friday and Saturday night, with site camping covering some of the overflow occupancy. Traveling bikers helped the local economy but also contributed to the charities present.
Natalie Haggerty, secretary of the Mahoning Township Supervisors, issued a permit to cover more than twenty charities benefiting from the event. The Valor Clinic, Turn To Us, St Luke’s, Blue Mountain Health Systems, Carbon Animal Rescue Team, Presbyterian Church, Parryville Fire, Bowmanstown Fire, and the Fairview Hose company all participated, just to name a few of the organizations.
Charmaine Bradley and David Bradley helped organize the Valor Clinic’s Charity Auction and pulled a permit from the township. Natalie Haggerty graciously added all the event charity vendors to the single permit, saving the charities time and resources. As a result of Bike Night, the Valor Clinic received several direct-check donations totaling $1,200. These checks were provided by Ty Poole from The Boatyard Bar & Grill, the Lehighton VFW, the Bangor VFW, Thermal Solutions, Inc, Mark Sverchek’s Nationwide Insurance Agency, Hooked on Yarn, and St Luke’s. A $400 donation from James and Brittany Pompa on behalf of The Flower Tent of the Lehigh Valley was also made. In addition to the direct checks, Valor Clinic received 100% of the ticket sales from the basket auction ($1,295) and the 50/50 proceeds ($205).
Charmaine Bradley said, “It was hot, and we’d like to thank Ty Poole and his army of volunteers for enduring the heat all day and making the event happen. Bike Night and the Valor Clinic owe him and his team a debt of gratitude. We’d also like to thank the businesses and people who donated the baskets and gift cards to the auction. Hundreds of people visited our tent . . . it was an amazing turnout.” Also enduring the heat in the Valor Clinic tent were Gail Maholick; veteran Will Everetts, with his wife Deb; and Amy Bamford. Mark Baylis, veteran and co-founder of the clinic, was on-site to thank those contributing.
For additional information, or for making a proposal to host Lehighton Bike Night 2017, contact the event team at www.lehightonbikenight.org.