On a chilly summer morning, the mosquitoes roamed the plains outside of the Fort Langley National Historic Site. Busy members of Envision Financial, Prospera Credit Union, and Aldergrove Financial Group were putting up tents and preparing for the jam-packed day to come, with the aroma of fresh pancakes cooked by the Lions Club off in the distance. The riders were eager to arrive just after 8am, lining up to receive their packages including a commemorative t-shirt and pin. Dressed head-to-toe in leather and fringe, many riders were raving about the Elvis and Johnny Cash tribute concerts held the night before inside the historic Fort. The Tourism Langley ladies were excited to talk to the riders and had a chance to sign many of them up for a Look At Langley card, giving them access to deals and discounts in Langley while providing valuable information on our community’s offerings.
The riders (many whom are locals) were pleased to discover new things to do and see in Langley, some even planning trips to pick berries or take a tour at a winery! At 10am, City of Langley Mayor Peter Fassbender, Township of Langley Mayor Jack Froese and Township Counsellor Steve Ferguson spoke about the Salvation Army’s Gateway of Hope support centre and the importance of community involvement in helping those suffering from mental health issues resulting in addiction and homelessness. The positive energy in the air was magnetic; the riders were itching to set off and take in the beautiful scenery of the Fraser Valley! Langley is home to elongated, winding country roads and blissful mountain scenery. Riders were able to enjoy both a personal hobby and pristine environment while raising around $10,000 to benefit the fight to end homelessness. The event’s proceeds went to the City of Langley’s Gateway of Hope and was organized by a commity of members from the local community.
The weather for the ride was ideal: sunny with a cool breeze, perfect conditions for a ride out in the valley. Close to 100 bikers embarked on a 180km rally starting and ending at the Fort Langley National Historic Site riding with historic routes in Langley, Abbotsford, Yarrow, and Chilliwack. Along the way, riders were given a lunch at the Gateway of Hope and participated in a poker run at five different stops, some came back raving about strong hands, others simplied smiled and handed over their cards. After they returned, bikers had the opportunity to enter the Show n’ Shine before heading off to a beautiful salmon dinner provided by the Kwantlen First Nations Group. Winners of the poker run and Show n’ Shine won delicious gift baskets put together by Krause Berry Farms, a local berry farm growing and selling many different types of berries and fruits as well as preserves and desserts. The following morning, a public pancake breakfast was once again provided by the Lions Club drawing many families in from all over Langley.
The efforts of the sponsors, volunteers, and organizers cannot go without recognition. Tireless hours of planning and promotion went into this event, making it a huge success. Many thanks to the staff of the Fort Langley National Historic Site and the Kwantlen First Nation Group for the use of the property. The Ride Into History will be back again next year, drawing in more riders and more support for Langley’s Gateway of Hope. This fun event is open to anyone with a motorized bike, from near or far.