Bikes, Blues & BBQ Organizers Present Checks To Local Charities, Nonprofits

FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM) -- The Bikes, Blues & BBQ rally ended more than two months ago, but the effects of the long weekend will still be felt for some time to come.

Organizers of the rally presented 40 different charity organizations and nonprofits with checks Wednesday (Dec. 6) during a ceremony at George's Majestic Lounge.

More than $270,000 has been given to the different groups in Northwest Arkansas since the latest rally in September, which is estimated to have attracted about 300,000 visitors.

"It's huge for us to be able to give back to so many worthwhile charities, and besides monetary donations, we're helping raise awareness for their causes," said Tommy Sisemore, executive director of Bikes, Blues & BBQ.

Since 2000, the rally has raised more than $1.75M for local charities and organizations;  like Peace at Home Family Shelter in Northwest Arkansas.

"We did actually expand our shelter earlier this year," said Eva Terry, development director of Peace at Home Family Shelter. "So, support from our partners like Bikes, Blues & BBQ means even more now than it did before."

The shelter houses more than 100 children annually, which results in additional needs that must be met.

"Not just the bedding and the clothing and the food, but we also have a children's advocate on staff working with them and children's activities and art classes," Sizemore said.

Often touted as the world's largest charity motorcycle rally, Sizemore said visitors often know there entire purpose is to give back.

"Besides riding NWA, the people that come love that all the money that they spend here stays here and goes back to local charities," Sisemore added.