And the winner is… Wednesday, May 4 2011 

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Thanks to the incredible generosity of all the cigar smokers out there that donated to the Ride for Kids this year, I was able to raise $2937.00 for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation.  You can read all about the Ride in my event recap here.

As promised, I took the names of all my donors from this blog and the various cigar forums around the internet and put those names in a hat to draw for a winner of a 5 pack of premium cigars from my personal stash.  That 5 pack includes a Tatuaje Monster Series “The Frank” and an Opus xXx along with 3 other top-shelf cigars.

And the so the winner is…   Patrick from the Stogie Review Fan Forum.  Congrats Patrick and thank you very much for your donation.  And thank you to everyone else whose generosity has provided much needed help for these brave sick kids.

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2011 Triangle Area Ride for Kids Recap Monday, May 2 2011 

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This past Sunday was the 8th annual Triangle Area Ride for Kids out at Jordan Lake. There were over 760 participants in this years ride and we raised $109,824.00 for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation.  The weather was fantastic and the ride was a blast.  I couldn’t get a wide enough angle with my little point and shoot to capture all the motorcycles but you can see there was a sea of bikes at the event.
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We had the Cary Police Escorting us on the ride with their spiffy new department motorcycles.
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I had my bike all polished up and spiffy for the ride. Best looking bike there if I do say so myself 😉  (more…)

2011 Triangle Area Ride for Kids Friday, Mar 11 2011 

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As many of my readers know, every year I raise funds for the Ride for Kids and the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation of the US. I have been raising money for this worthy cause for eight years now. Last year in very large part to the generous support of Cigar Smokers everywhere I was able to raise over $5200 for the PBTFUS. It was amazing to see how so many people found it in their hearts to help. As a result a lot of money went to the PBTFUS to help the sick children who suffer from brain tumors, and I was awarded as a “Ride for Kids Champion” and was the 4th place individual fundraiser for the the Triangle Ride. It was a great feeling and nice to be recognized for my efforts and in recognizing me; really they were recognizing all of you because you are the ones who helped me raise all that money. So thank you again for that help.

It is time again to begin my fund raising efforts for the 2011 ride. The past few years I have been giving away some amazing cigars like whole boxes of Opus X and whole boxes of other really great cigars. Unfortunately this year I will not have the big prizes I have had in the past. Circumstances dictate that I simplify things a little this year. I still hope you can find the means and desire to help these children and donate to this very worthy cause. This year my goal is to raise $2000.00 for the ride and I know I can do t with your help. After the Ride which takes place at Jordan Lake in North Carolina on May 1st, I will put the names of all the people who donated into a hat and draw one out to win a 5 pack of my best cigars from my personal stash which will Include a Tatuaje Frank, and an Opus xXx(Power Ranger). So there is still a chance to win some nice smokes while helping out these kids. Really this 5 pack give away is just a small way for me to say thank you to all the generous Cigar Smokers out there that help out every year. I never cease to be amazed at how giving and friendly the cigar smoking community is. You guys and gals really are some of the most generous people on the planet and I always am very appreciative of your help. Here is the link to donate to this years Ride:

Click Here to Donate

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Smoke a DPG Series JJ Today Thursday, Jul 22 2010 

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ACigarSmoker.com is doing a wonderful thing.  If you smoke a Series JJ today and take a picture and then submit that picture to their email address they will make a donation of $20 to the American SIDS Institute in honor and support of a fellow BOTL who lost his little boy to SIDS three years ago.  Please click this link to get all the details and find out where to send your photo.

2010 Ride for Kids Wrap-Up Monday, May 3 2010 

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Well another great year for the Ride for Kids is in the books. This years ride was a lot of fun in some very nice weather. There were a ton of people at the event this year. The line of motorcycles on the ride literally stretched for miles. There were all kinds of bikes there. Old and new. Cruiser and Sport. Even the highly unusual. Check out this dragon bike…
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Empire CigarsNUBCigars Direct

I started off the morning with what has become my traditional pre-ride cigar.  A very good Perdomo Reserve Champange. (more…)

Win a Box of OpusX Love Affairs Saturday, Mar 13 2010 

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It is time again for my annual fund raising drive for the Ride for Kids and the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation of the US. This is the third year in a row that, thanks to some very generous people in the cigar industry, I have some spectacular cigars to give away as a thank you for your support of my efforts and of this wonderful charity that does so very much to help sick kids. This year you could win a box of Opus X Love Affairs, Hemingway Short Stories, Nubs, or a Cain F sampler pack.  Also up for grabs is a 5 pack Tatuaje sampler which will include a “Frank”, a 5 pack of Opus xXx, or a 5 pack of Oliva Serie V Belicosos.  Keep reading to find out how. (more…)

Ride for Kids 2009 Recap & The Winners Monday, May 4 2009 

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Another great year for the Triangle Area Ride for Kids. The weather was idyllic and the crowd was great. A lot of motorcycles showed up for the event again this year. The ride itself was great. The organizers picked a great route and the Chatham County Police did a wonderful job escorting the ride and taking care of the traffic for us. The ride was a non stop 50 or so mile ride through beautiful country that included a loop around the traffic circle in Pittsboro, NC. The loop through that circle is neat for the kids riding in the sidecars at the front of the procession because it allows them to loop back and see all the hundreds of motorcycles riding behind them. This year I had the honor of being among the top 5 individual fund raisers at the event. I was called up on stage with the other 4 individuals. Thanks to all the people who supported me and gave so generously I raised $3,220 for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation this year earning me fifth place among the top fundraisers. It was quite an honor and a big thrill. I share that honor with all of you who donated, because without your generosity and caring it would have never happened. So thank you once again everyone for your support. The ride this year raised $126,207.95. If memory serves this is the second highest amount in the Triangles Ride’s six year history. (more…)

Who Wants a Box of OpusX? Wednesday, Apr 15 2009 

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I am almost there.  With over $2000 raised so far, and am just a bit more than $700 away from reaching my fundraising goal of $3000.  I need your help in this last week and a half to get that last bit of money to reach my goal.  There is still time for you to donate and give yourself a chance to win a BOX of Opus X Perfection No.5’s, or a BOX of A. Fuente Añejo No.49’s, or a BOX of Hemingway Classic MADUROS all very generously provided by CigarsDirect.com.  Every little bit helps and all it takes is a $10 donation to get your name in the Hat for the cigars.  Read all about it in my previous post about The Ride For Kids.  It is a worthy charity that does amazing work.  In that post I talk about the charity and what you need to do to get entered for the cigar drawing.

Click Here For Details

If you are in the Raleigh area and ride a motorcycle, I’d like to invite you to come on out and participate in the ride.  It is a lot of fun.  It takes place May 3rd.  We meet at the White Oak recreation area at Jordon Lake on highway64.  Go to the official Ride for Kids page to get all the info.

Thank you all for your fantastic and generous support of my efforts to help these children.

-Matt

Help Children and Win a Box of Rare Fuente Cigars Tuesday, Mar 10 2009 

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Make a donation to a great cause and you could win one of three incredible boxes of cigars. You could win a box of Opus X, Añejos, or Hemingway Maduros. Keep reading to find out how.   (more…)

Ride for Kids 2008 Recap & The Winners!! Monday, May 5 2008 

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This year’s Ride for Kids was a great success. It is amazing to me how fast his event has grown over the past 5 years. This year we had over 1000 motorcyclists at the event and raised a lot of money. Thanks to friends, family, and all the generous BOTL that donated this year I raised $3180 beating my goal of $3000. That put me in the top 10 of individual fundraisers at the event for the second year in a row. It says a lot about the growth of the event when I can bring more than twice as much money than I did last year and yet I ranked about the same in terms of individual fundraisers this year. I will have to work hard to keep pace for next year. The event raised in total, $138,280.00 for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation. Darth Vader and some Storm Troopers showed up. It was a cool treat for the kids. The top fundraiser of the event this year was a guy who is an illustrator for Lucas Arts and he brought out the Star Wars Characters. There were several “Ride Stars” at the event. A Star is a child who has either beaten, or is battling a brain tumor. They are great kids that a full of personality and do a fabulous job entertaining and inspiring the crowd every year. Here are a bunch of pictures from the event…

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Ride For Kids Update: Goal Exceeded!!! Saturday, Apr 26 2008 

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The last day of donations was an eventful day capped off by a very generous donation for a BOTL at SocialCigar.com. The Ride is next Sunday on May 4th and I’ll announce the winners of the cigars on the 5th. I expect a few more offline donations from family and friends to trickle in over the next week that are independent from the cigar drawing so I’ll wait until I announce the winner to post the final total on the money raised. I have a lot of people to thank for all the help, not the least of which are all the generous souls who donated. When I wrapped this thing up on the 5th I will make sure I get all those thank yous listed and done right, but right now I want to say a quick thanks to the following people…

Billy Ferriolo of CigarsDirect.com
Jeff Godfrey and Chris Harper of Tabacalera Perdomo
Dylan Austin of Camacho Cigars and Social Cigar
Bill & Rob of Tobacconists of Cary
Tom of Keepers of the Flame
Brian of Brian’s Random Thoughts & The Stogie Review
Stinkie at CigarBeat.net
The Patricks and George at The Stogie Guys
Jesse at CigarJack
Ricky & Scott at Cigar Command
Kevin at The Box Press
BlowinSmoke.net
International Cigar Club
The Herf Hut
Social Cigar
Vintage Cigar Club

The Internet is a powerful place. It gets a bad rep because of all the people that use it for bad things. I think the Internet community of Cigar smokers have shown how it can also be used to do a whole lot of good. Thanks everyone for your support.

Ride for Kids Update: Last Day!!! Friday, Apr 25 2008 

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Today is the last day to get your donations in to be eligible for the drawing to win one of 4 boxes of cigars. As of this morning I have raised $2205 which puts me less than $800 from my goal of $3000. Every little bit helps so please donate today. All donations are tax deductible. Here is a picture of the prizes.

Click here for all the details on how to donate and enter the drawing.

Ride for Kids: Broke the $2000 Mark Tuesday, Apr 22 2008 

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Update:

Today I broke the $2000 mark in my fundraising efforts for the Ride for Kids and the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation of the US. Thank you very much to everyone who has donated. If you haven’t gotten your donation in yet, there is still time to do so and get in on the drawing for a free box of cigars!

Just click here for all the details on how to donate and enter.

I also want to say thank you again to the generous companies that donated the cigars for the drawing. Please feel free to pass along your appreciation to these companies both verbally and by supporting their products and patronizing their businesses. I want to thank Billy and CigarsDirect.com, Jeff & Chris and Tabacalera Perdomo, Dylan and Camacho Cigars, and Bill & Rob with the Tobacconists of Cary. Thank you so much for your generosity and support.

Get your donations in by Friday the 25th! Help me reach that $3000 fundraising goal!

Ride for Kids Update Sunday, Apr 6 2008 

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Well response has been a little slower than I initially anticipated. I thought a lot more people would be willing to donate $10 for a chance at a whole box of cigars. It’s less than a month until the event and I am well short of my $3000 fundraising goal. So I am making another plea for donations. Ten dollars may seem like a small amount of money, but when a lot of people are able to give this modest amount, it adds up really quick. Please click on over to my original Ride for Kids Post to find out more about the organization I am raising money for and how you could win one of four really great boxes of cigars, including a sealed box of Fuente Fuente Opus X Petit Lanceros. Here is a picture of all the prizes up for grabs.

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Every $10 you donate through my giving page earns you one entry into the drawing for these cigars. A $50 donation gets you 7 entries and the only limitation on how many entries you get is how much you can afford to give. All donations benefit the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation of the US and are tax deductible. All the money donated via the giving site is delivered to the charity by First Giving. I never handle any of the money given through that site.

Be sure to read the instructions detailed in the Ride for Kids 2008 post by clicking here. There you will find the link to donate.

Support a Great Cause and Win a Box of Opus X Wednesday, Mar 19 2008 

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Make a donation to a great cause and you could win one of four incredible boxes of cigars. Keep reading to find out how…

The Ride for Kids is a fundraising organization that raises money specifically for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation of the United States which is a nonprofit organization devoted to research and treatment in the area of pediatric brain tumors. The Ride for Kids organization is made up of motorcycle enthusiasts from all over the US. They are headquartered in Asheville, NC. They hold ride events all over the country throughout the year to raise money and awareness for this disease. There are a lot of children in this country that are diagnosed with brain tumors every year. No one yet knows exactly what causes these tumors in otherwise healthy kids. I am sure you can imagine though what it must be like for a parent to hear a diagnosis like that for their little child. It puts a huge emotional as well as financial burden on the families. The Ride for Kids and the Pediatric brain Tumor Foundation of the US (PBTUS) are devoted to helping these families and these children. The PBTFUS uses the money raised to do research for treatment and prevention of pediatric brain tumors as well as provide families coping with this disease with support.

I first got involved with the Ride for Kids in 2004. My wife was pregnant with our first child and with the prospect of being a first time dad I found myself thinking about things that previously had never crossed my mind. They say having a child will change your life. Truer words may never have been spoken. I have been riding motorcycles for years and in 2004 I learned about a charity ride that was starting in Cary, NC and riding on down to a small town called Sanford. It was the first year the Ride for kids had an event in my area. What caught my attention at that time was that the charity benefited sick children. I looked into it some more and learned all about the Ride for Kids and the PBTFUS. For the first time I was able to put myself in the shoes of a parent and I thought what it might be like to learn that my child was seriously ill. I hadn’t even met my daughter at this point as she was still six plus months away from being born, but the thought scared me more than a little. I felt compelled to be involved and to help out. That is the story of how I got involved with this charity. I have since been blessed with two very happy and healthy children. Ella is 3 now and my son Jake will be one year old in April. I have been participating in the ride for kids every year since 2004 and in that 4 year span have raised over $2600.00, and $1400 of that was just last year. My best year to date. I hope to improve on that number this year and with your help I will raise $3000.00 for this year’s Triangle Area Ride for Kids.

Go to http://www.firstgiving.com/matthew2008 and make a donation. For every $10 you donate you name will be entered once in the drawing for one of four boxes of cigars. A $50 donation will get your name entered in the drawing seven times. So for example, a $20 donation gets your name in the hat twice, a $50 donation puts your name in 7 times, $70 would get you nine, $100 gets your name in fourteen times… You get the idea. The only limit is what you can afford. Here are the cigars you can win and the very generous companies which have provided these great prizes for such a wonderful cause.

1 box of Fuente Opus X Petit Lanceros from CigarsDirect.com
1 Box of Hoyo de Monterey Dark Sumatra Noches from Tobacconists of Cary, NC
1 Box of Perdomo Habano Corojo Robustos from Tabacalera Perdomo
1 Box of Camacho Corojo Monarcas from Camacho Cigars

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All donations must be made by April 25th to be included in the drawing. The Winners will be announced on May 5th after the event. The ride takes place on Sunday May 4th.

**IMPORTANT**

When you leave your donation on the First Giving site please be sure to fill out the Display Name, and leave your email address or phone number in the “Personal Message” section. This is how I will be able to contact you if you win one of the boxes of cigars. I have setup the FirstGiving site to NOT display the “Personal Message” field so that information will not be publicly displayed on the site. If you fail to leave some kind of contact info in the “Personal Message” field your name will not be able to be entered into the drawing, but your donation will still be very much appreciated. Also be aware, each person is only eligible to win one box. So if your name is drawn once, it will not be eligible to be drawn again. Any questions can be sent to mattridesforkids at gmail dot com. I’ll do my best to answer any emails I receive.

All the donations go to FirstGiving which then distributes the funds to The Ride for Kids so I never handle any of the money. It all goes straight to the charity via FirstGiving. Although donations are welcome from any and everyone, this drawing is open to US residents only. I will not be able to ship cigars internationally. Also you must be 18 years of age or older to qualify for the drawing. The Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation of the US is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit charity and all donations are tax deductible.

Thank you so much to everyone who donates. The money raised will have a profound impact on the lives of many sick children. And thank you to the very generous companies that donated the cigars for the drawing. Tobacconists of Cary in Cary, North Carolina, CigarsDirect.com, Tabacalera Perdomo, and Camacho Cigars. These are all great companies that deserve your patronage.

Click Here to Donate and Enter to Win

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