Our Sister Sites:

Bikernet Trikes Bikernet Baggers Bikernet Blog
Ride Forever - Bikernet.com
Friday Edition


5th Annual Biker Belles Ride For a Day - August 6th, Sturgis, SD

The Biker Belles Ride is a “Celebration of Real Women, Real Stories and Real Fun”

by Mistress Chris with most of the photos by Rogue
8/26/2013


Share this story:


 
5th Annual Biker Belles Ride for a Day – August 6th, Sturgis, SD
By Mistress Chris, with most of the photos by Rogue 

The Biker Belles Ride is a “Celebration of Real Women, Real Stories and Real Fun”

The 5th Annual Biker Belles Ride for A Day was held during the Sturgis Rally on August 6th, and was a tremendous success.  It really does not get any bigger than the Biker Belles Ride, each year they have doubled the number of women joining the ride, and raised more money than the year before.  This year they raised a total of $36,520, which will go to their two favorite charities, Helping With Horsepower and The Sturgis Motorcycle Museum and Hall of Fame.

Symposium ladies
Symposium ladies


So who are the Biker Belles?  

One day several women gathered together at the Buffalo Chip, many of them Inductees into the National Motorcycle Hall of Fame: Meg McDonough (Jackpine Gypsy’s), Cris Sommer-Simmons (journalist and author), Gloria Struck (Motor Maid) and a few others, all very accomplished riders.  They came up with the idea of women meeting with other women riders to empower and encourage women to ride, to let their lives speak, and to embrace being a woman.
 
Over the past 10 years, the idea of women riding has become more acceptable, and more male riders are supporting women, manufacturers are producing female specific products for the lady motorcyclist and the market is subtly changing.  

They wanted a way to raise money for local charities that would be meaningful to women, and inspire and help other young women and girls. Laura Klock, set up Helping With Horsepower as a way to channel money to charities helping young abused women.  This is one of the charities the Biker Belles support.

 
Biker Belles group photo
Biker Belles group photo


Biker Belles is a place for all women to gather, meet, share stories, empower each other and to show that motorcycles can be a vehicle of change for women.  These women are passionate, dynamic and selfless, committed to motorcycling and through their stories, deeds and actions they encourage other women to be all they can be.
 
A few of the Biker Belles bikes waiting in their special parking space.
A few of the Biker Belles bikes waiting in their special parking space.

They also wanted to promote awareness and celebrate women in motorcycling through the years, through the art and culture of motorcycling.  The Sturgis Motorcycle Museum was the perfect charity as they have encouraged exhibitions about how women have been important through motorcycling history.
 
All of the Biker Belles are strong, self-motivated women, who have faced adversity in their own lives.  They all ride, whether they ride solo, or with a partner or ride in a side car, it really does not matter.  One way or another they are very involved in the Motorcycle Industry, bringing a strong voice to women motorcyclists.

 
Vicki Sanfelipo
Vicki Sanfelipo

 
Cris Sommer-Simmons
Cris Sommer-Simmons

 
Trish Horstman
Trish Horstman

 
Cat Hammes -OneLeggedBlondeCat
Cat Hammes -OneLeggedBlondeCat

 
Kristy Swanson
Kristy Swanson

 

Just a few examples:

Land Speed Record holder Laura Klock of Klock Werks Kustom Cycles, organized Helping With Horsepower, participated in all-women bike builds and is a Motor Maid.

Shelly Rossmeyer of Destination Daytona is also a Motivational Speaker.

Black Hills native, Jessi Combs, from Velocity Television’s "All Girls Garage" and other shows including: Overhaulin, Mythbusters, Xtreme 4x4, and Full Metal TV.  These shows have allowed Jessi to share her message; women can get dirty, build cool machines, drive fast, and still be the beautiful and unique creatures God created us ladies to be.

Vicki Sanfelipo, RN/EMT, is the Founder of Diamond Posse, ED and Founder of Accident Scene Management and Road Guardians. As she says, “It is when you are “Forged Under Pressure” that the jewel with its many facets is created…”  

Actress Kristy Swanson is best known as Buffy in Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  She has been in multiple blockbuster movies, and starred in many popular TV Shows. She has a CanAm Spyder and loves to ride.  

Avid rider, Cat Hammes better known as OneLeggedBlondeCat, is an inspiration to amputees and veterans alike. After a horrific riding accident and the loss of her left leg, having faced near death, she rides her pink and white 2006 H-D Fatboy every chance she gets.

Trish Horstman from Baker Drivetrain is the young dynamic marketing guru behind one of the fastest growing brands in the custom industry, Baker Drivetrain.

Cris Sommer-Simmons, Motorcycle Cris is a proud inductee of the National Motorcycle Hall of Fame, as well as the Sturgis Motorcycle Hall of Fame and AMA Hall of Fame.
She is married to Patrick Simmons from the Doobie Brothers (more on that later!)

Marilyn Stemp who is the heart (editor) of Ironworks Magazine; the publication she and her late husband Dennis launched in 1989.  She says “I like words—and I’m not afraid to use them.”

These are just a few, there are many more from the Motorcycling Industry.  They all bring a strong, fun and real voice to other women riders.  The charities that benefit from this yearly run and auction are both close to their hearts.  
 
 
Biker Belles Parking
Biker Belles Parking

 
Diva Amy's blinged out bike!
Diva Amy's blinged out bike!

 

Now onto the Ride itself!
  
The ride started at the The Lodge at Deadwood with Registration and the ladies picked up their Goodie bags, which included a special Biker Belle T-shirt among other things. Relaxing and fun time followed with the Team Diva sponsored Comfort Zone with massage, shopping and other amenities, plus a fun photo booth for photos with fellow Biker Belles.  This was followed by an Inspiring Symposium of leading industry women, including Shelly Rossmeyer, Cris Sommer-Simmons, Vicki Roberts-Sanfelipo, Trish Horstman, Tigra Tsujikawa, and celebrity rider, Kristy Swanson.  These are ordinary women doing extraordinary work in a field, which has always been predominantly male.  Their stories are inspiring and empowering to all women, but especially those women riders who enjoy riding their own ride. 

 


They then mounted up on their bikes, and took an escorted ride from The Lodge at Deadwood through the beautiful, winding foothills of the Black Hills.  This is a spectacular ride, which was lead by Ride Captain, and famed Moira Zin, professional rider, Founder of Elite Trackdays, she worked with Femmoto, BMW Motorrad, Triumph and Ducati N.A. as a control rider, and is also a motormaid.  
 
Vicki Sanfelipo was the Sweeper on the ride, with a couple of women acting as Road Guards. This year they had someone with a sidecar and passenger, several trikes, an increase in the number of men riding, and many supporters, husbands, boyfriends, and friends who came along to support their women.  New York Myke was there as always, he is a strong supporter of the Biker Belles, and owns San Diego Harley Davidson, but always makes sure he gets to Sturgis for the rally and the Biker Belle ride.

 

 
This ride finished at The Sturgis Buffalo Chip where the Buffalo Chip put on an all out special Biker Belles shindig including lunch, beverage, shopping, a fashion show featuring Harley-Davidson clothing specifically designed for women, silent and live auction, and, of course, entertainment by Iron Cowgirl Missy.  Iron Cowgirl plays raw, emotional music based on real life experiences.  After such a successful day, the evening festivities finished off with a headline concert in the Sturgis Buffalo Chip amphitheater with Tesla opening for Toby Keith, in a rocking concert! 

“The Biker Belles event was inspiring and an awesome opportunity to meet new friends and fellow enthusiasts.  Every age and every level of experience rider participated and it was all about getting to know each other,” says Laura Klock of Klock Werks Kustom Cycles. 

 
Who gets the job of organizing and coordinating the Biker Belle Run?  

This is the responsibility of Toni Woodruff and her team at The Buffalo Chip.  The Buffalo Chip is a family business, and was started 32 years ago.  Toni is the daughter of Rod, and started working with vending and merchandising 13 years ago.  She became the Program and Coordinator for the Biker Belles 3 years ago, which along with her dedicated team manages to put on a spectacular show each year.  Her enthusiasm and professionalism, makes the day a great success!  She is herself a positive and dynamic influence in the motorcycling industry.

“It doesn’t get any bigger in Sturgis than the Buffalo Chip and Harley-Davidson. We are very excited to be working with Harley-Davidson and Rossmeyer’s Destination Daytona, as part of one the most iconic brands in motorcycling. The Biker Belles Celebration is a distinctive event, showcasing the women motorcycling community’s generosity by supporting two deserving charities while providing women riders a home, a platform, and an opportunity to have fun and celebrate motorcycling.” – Toni Woodruff, Project Manager of Biker Belles – Sturgis Buffalo Chip

 
Cris, Trish and Vicki during the Symposium
Cris, Trish and Vicki during the Symposium

 
                       -----------------------------------------------------------

Editors Note: Researching the ride and the women who are the Biker Belles led to one inspirational story after another, and we will be bringing you more articles on some of these special women and their role in the Motorcycling Industry.  They are fascinating and amazing, and Bikernet has been very lucky to be given the opportunity to interview them and well, you will just have to stay tuned to find out more!!  
 
                       ------------------------------------------------------------ 
 

This year the Biker Belles teamed up with Harley-Davidson and Rossmeyer’s Destination Daytona, (Shelly Rossmeyer) with the generous donation of a Softail Slim Harley-Davidson.  The 2013 Softtail Slim Harley-Davidson has a low seat height, beefy front end and a 103 inch motor which makes it a perfect ride for women. The bike was customized and personalized by Jessi Combs from the "All Girls Garage Fame", along with the support of industry donors including, Avon Tyres, Bruce Rossmeyer’s Harley Davidson, Klock Werks Kustoms, Legend Air Suspension, LGE&CTS, Magnaflow, PPG Paint and Ride Wright Wheels. 

 
Shelly Rossmeyer  and Jessi Combs with the Biker Belle bike before customization
Shelly Rossmeyer and Jessi Combs with the Biker Belle bike before customization

 
The transformative work will be featured on two episodes of All Girls Garage scheduled to air on Velocity TV August 24th and September 7th with the last episode filmed on site at the Buffalo Chip.  A definite MUST SEE!!

Shelly Rossmeyer, Pat and Cris Simmons with Jessi Combs just after the bike was auctioned.
Shelly Rossmeyer, Pat and Cris Simmons with Jessi Combs just after the bike was auctioned.


The bike was then auctioned off during the Biker Belle public auction, and to everyone’s enjoyment, was purchased by Patrick Simmons of Doobie Brothers fame for his wife Cris Sommer-Simmons (Biker Belle) as an anniversary gift. The bike sold for $22,000.

Rod Woodruff (President, Sturgis Buffalo Chip) says: “We were pleased to see the large turnout for yesterday’s events and especially for this year’s Biker Belles Ride. Watching Pat Simmons bid on and win Jessi Combs’ bike for his wife was particularly exciting since the two first met at the Chip.”

 
Chris McGee (MC) and Toni Woodruff (Sturgis Buffalo Chip) sharing the microphone.  Holding the check is Laura Klock (Helping With Horsepower), Jessi Combs (All Girls Garage) and Christine Paige-Diers (The Sturgis Motorcycle Museum)
Chris McGee (MC) and Toni Woodruff (Sturgis Buffalo Chip) sharing the microphone. Holding the check is Laura Klock (Helping With Horsepower), Jessi Combs (All Girls Garage) and Christine Paige-Diers (The Sturgis Motorcycle Museum)

 

Helping with Horsepower was founded by Biker Belle Laura Klock, a program which develops volunteer programs to empower, encourage and help raise funds for worthy charities working with young women and girls at risk for abuse.  One of their programs which have been very successful is the Bike Rebuild Program at the Abbot House in Mitchell SD, where they have residential treatment for girls aged 7-17 and come from abusive situations.  Using motorcycles as a tool to teach life’s lessons on a personal and professional level, Laura Klock repaired, customized and finished a damaged stock Harley-Davidson alongside the girls of the Abbott House. While the girls learned how to build and repair a motorcycle, they also were being given a great gift of empowerment and encouragement in life.  Just like a motorcycle, you can repair and rebuild anything in your life with the right tools and inspiration.

 
The Sturgis Motorcycle Museum and Hall of Fame in Sturgis, SD is dedicated to collect, preserve and interpret the history of motorcycling.  They honor those who have made a positive and significant impact on the industry and pay tribute to the heritage of the Sturgis Rally.  A very popular place to visit especially during the Rally, they are open year round, 7 days a week.  They stand out from other museums because they not only document the history of the bikes, but they document the people who have shaped the sport and the industry.


Advertisement
 
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
 
Biker Belles website: 
 
 

Share this story:



Back to Special Reports


Your thoughts on this article

Your Name
Email
City
Country
v
State/Province
v
Comments
Anti-Spam Question:
Please enter the words you see in the box, in order and separated by a space. Doing so helps prevent automated programs from abusing this service.
Submit
Clear