DECEMBER 2004 JOURNAL ARCHIVE


1st - Day #215
ONLY THREE DAYS TO GO!

The visit with my parents was much too short after so many miles, and months, since we last saw them, but there are still miles to go before the ride comes to an end. So, today finds us in Myrtle Beach, poised for re-entry into North Carolina.

Most of the day's ride was spent reminiscing about the long journey and whether it will have any lasting effects on the long waiting list facing people with disabilities who are hoping to find the independence offered by an Assistance Dog.

I thought back to our first ride and those who weathered the heavy rains to help us 'Get Out Of Town'. They believed. I thought of all the students we touched along the way. They were believers after our visit. And I thought of all the emails and guestbook entries that have kept us going all these miles. You believed. Thank you.

Just because this ride is coming to an end doesn't mean that the waiting lists are any shorter. There is still much work to do and your continuing support is crucial to to helping us move towards the day when those long waiting lists are a part of history. So, please don't let your support end on December 4th. It could be any of us waiting for an Assistance Dog in the future. Three to five years is much too long to wait.

Our next stop will be for some great events in the Wilmington, NC area with charity partner Carolina Canines For Service. If you're in the area, please join us on Thursday night at the Ramada Inn for a North Carolina pig-pickin' and beach music by the Craig Woolard. Check out our Upcoming Events page for more info on that and all our events.

---- IF YOU WANT A 2004 MAX & BAILEY CALENDAR, ORDER SOON. THEY ARE SELLING FAST! ----

Donor-Of-The-Day : David and Teresa Lee are today's donors for another online store purchase. They have been supporting this ride since the early days - and they keep on supporting us. Thanks guys!

Photos-of-the-Day : Some shots that you may not have seen in a while...(1) Butch Evans from Raleigh H.O.G. giving us his hand and a $2,000 check as a send off in Raleigh (2) Carolina Canines in Raleigh to see us off. (3) Bailey and Janet go for a ride in the Ozark Mountains (4) A thought from the site of the Oklahoma City bombing

Independence is still on sale in our online company store. Buy anything in the store and know that your purchases are helping fuel the hopes of people with disabilities across the country. Will this be the year that they get their Assistance Dog for Christmas? It may be - with your help!


Copyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, Inc



2nd - Day #216
MAX & BAILEY CROSS BACK INTO NORTH CAROLINA

After 216 days on the road, Max & Bailey have returned to North Carolina. And the way we entered the state seemed quite fitting. The smell of pine trees and small twisting roads welcomed us back to our home state. First stop -- a little North Carolina seafood in the coastal town of Calabash.

As a special treat, Jay Schwantes (our website guru, board member and good friend) joined us from Myrtle Beach all the way to Wilmington. Riding shotgun in Jay's convertible was Bandit - a very cool Chihuahau who has a lot of spunk for his three pound size.

A ferry ride across the Cape Fear River seemed appropriate since we hadn't been on the NC waters for almost a year. The smell of pine mixed with salt from the brackish river water made us feel right at home. Max & Bailey had their noses in the air. I think they realized that the ride was coming to a close. They could smell home.

The evening was filled with a fun event hosted by our charity partner Carolina Canines For Service. Delicious North Carolina barbecue was the main course, mixed with music from the the ladies of the Azalea Coast Chorus and the Craig Woolard Band later in the evening. We were asked to say a few words at the event and were humbled by a standing ovation to honor our journey. And, as at all our charity partner events, it was our great pleasure to offer a $1,000 check to Rick Hairston of Carolina Canines as a down-payment on the total fund- raising efforts.

We need to thank Pat Nowak and all the volunteers who made the event possible. Pat worked overtime to pull the event together and she'll get to see what it's like to ride a few hundred miles in our shoes come Saturday. She's agreed to be my backseat rider for the ride home from Wilmington to Raleigh that day.

For those of you who are interested, come out and join us on the ride into Raleigh. There will be three pick up points along the route, and all vehicles are welcome. The motorcycles will lead the ride, but we have cars and vanloads of people riding also. Check out the Upcoming Events page for more information on the ride and the final big event at Ray Price Harley-Davidson. That's this Saturday, so plan to come out and support Max & Bailey's Ride.

---- IF YOU WANT A 2004 MAX & BAILEY CALENDAR, ORDER SOON. THEY ARE SELLING FAST! ----

Donor-Of-The-Day : Everyone who came out tonight to support the Wilmington event and especially those who purchase calendars and logo gear. You helped us raise another $788 tonight with your purchases.

Photos-of-the-Day : (1) Welcome to North Carolina (2 - 4) Ferry ride from Southport to Fort Fisher, North Carolina (5) Jay and Bandit pose with the crew aboard the ferry (6) Dee, Pat & Sam (L-R) staffed the registration tables (7) Rick Hairston (L) introduces a few members of the Carolina Canines Board of Directors (8) The Craig Woolard Band rocked the house (9) Nick Davis (the little guy) sings Christmas carols with the band.

Independence is still on sale in our online company store. Buy anything in the store and know that your purchases are helping fuel the hopes of people with disabilities across the country. Will this be the year that they get their Assistance Dog for Christmas? It may be - with your help!


Copyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, Inc



Copyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, Inc



3rd - Day #217
ASHLEY HIGH SCHOOL WELCOMES MAX & BAILEY

-- THE NUMBERS ARE IN : CAROLINA CANINES EVENT RAISED $2100+ --

Today, Max & Bailey made their last school visit on their 2004 Ride Across America at Ashley High School. The visit was extra special because Carolina Canines has partnered with the school in a program that offers students the opportunity to be foster puppy raisers for future Assistance Dogs. PAWS (Positivie Achievements With Students) is an in-school project that is just beginning and has great potential for students, the dogs and the people with disabilities who are waiting for Assistance Dogs.

We want to thank teacher assistant Karen Campbell for inviting us today. Ashley High School is a beautiful school and their auditorium has to be the most impressive place that we've had the honor of presenting our message to students. One of the students in the PAWS program, Jesse, gave us a warm introduction and then closed the program by offering PAWS shirts to Janet and me.

On our way to lunch after the school visit, Max & Bailey made two stops. The first was at Coastal K-9 Bakery. Jackie Oakes is the owner of the store and she made sure that Max & Bailey left with two big bags of Christmas cookie treats. I was afraid to get Max out of his sidecar because he is so food-driven that he might not have ever gotten back in the sidecar to leave!

The second stop was at the Bank of Wilmington to visit with one of the Carolina Canines volunteers and to meet the bank staff. It was the first time we have been invited to a bank on this journey. So, in true Max & Bailey style, we pulled their bandanas up over their noses and imitated an old-west bank robbery. It is a unique approach to fundraising but I doubt it has much success. If you want to keep the dogs out of jail -- send donations instead.

For those of you who are interested, come out and join us on the ride into Raleigh. There will be three pick up points along the route, and all vehicles are welcome. The motorcycles will lead the ride, but we have cars and vanloads of people riding also. Check out the Upcoming Events page for more information on the ride and the final big event at Ray Price Harley-Davidson. That's this Saturday, so plan to come out and support Max & Bailey's Ride.

---- IF YOU WANT A 2004 MAX & BAILEY CALENDAR, ORDER SOON. THEY ARE SELLING FAST! ----

Donor-Of-The-Day : This space available -- make your donation today and your name will be highlighted here later tonight. (please!)

Photos-of-the-Day : (1) Jesse introduces Blaine and Janet at Ashley HS (2 & 3) Blaine shares info about Max & Bailey's journey (4) PAWS students with Max & Bailey (5) Jackie Oakes poses with Janet and the dogs outside her Coastal K-9 Bakery (6) Bailey enjoys some of Jackie's treats (7) Max & Bailey at the Bank of Wilmington (8) Max contemplates a new approach to fundraising

Independence is still on sale in our online company store. Buy anything in the store and know that your purchases are helping fuel the hopes of people with disabilities across the country. Will this be the year that they get their Assistance Dog for Christmas? It may be - with your help!


Copyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, Inc



Copyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, Inc



4th - Day #218
MAX & BAILEY'S 2004 RIDE ACROSS AMERICA ENDS IN RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA

Well folks, Max & Bailey have now traveled nearly 25,000 miles to help end the long waiting lists facing people living with physical disabilities. They have been through the lower 48 states, helped us with presentations in schools across the nation and inspired Americans everywhere to reach into their hearts - and pockets - to make their journey a success and something to be remembered. And you have been there for every mile, around every turn and at every crossroad.

But, while this year's ride has come to an end, Max & Bailey's work will go on. Even with all our success this year, there are still millions of Americans living with physical disabilities who will have to wait up to five years for an Assistance Dog. We didn't think those waiting lists were reasonable when we began this project, and we still can't fathom what it must be like to sit inside your home, wanting to open your door for yourself and step outside into the sunshine, but until someone opens that door for you, it will remain closed.

The education and financial support from Max & Bailey's Ride will help to open those doors by enabling our charity partners to place more Assistance Dogs with those who need them.

Today, (Sunday) we're taking a true day of rest. On Monday, U.S. Hogs For Dogs will begin planning for another Ride. That's right, Max & Bailey will be making a Reunion Tour Ride through selected regions of the country. The 2005 Ride will focus on fundraising and corporate sponsors who want to help us eliminate these long waiting lists.

So, while this year's journey has come to an end, the momentum that Max & Bailey have created will continue into next year. Their days of sailing the oceans again will just have to wait. There are too many people who need our help. And they need yours.

We still have a good supply of logo gear in our online store and our calendars continue to be a quick selling item. Consider some last minute items as Christmas presents - a gift that gives twice. And if you want to be in on the ground floor for our event planning next year - act now. The list of possible events is already growing. Help us make 2005 even more successful than 2004.

Our last event of this ride - the ride home from Wilmington to Ray Price H-D in Raleigh, was an amazing, emotional roller coaster that was well attended by a broad cross-section of the community. Scott and Debbie Britt sent us off from Britt Motorsports with an escort of 40 bikes and a personal donation of $200 from the Britts. Friends met us at both rest area stops on I-40 and by the time we rode into Raleigh, we were trailed by nearly 70 bikes and led by the Wake County Sheriff's department. Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker pronounced the day as Hogs For Dogs Day in honor of Max & Bailey's Ride. Several of our charity partners (Paws With A Cause, Carolina Canines, and New Life Mobility Assistance Dogs) were there to share information with the public. Friends and Hogs For Dogs' supporters came from around the country (literally) to witness the final miles of this journey. It was one of those moments that we will never forget.

There are so many that deserve our thanks for the December 4th events. Britt Motorsports and Carolina Canines made sure we had a place to kick off the ride in Wilmington. The Wilmington HOG chapter escorted us out of town and Raleigh HOG and other friends picked up the ride at both of our rest stops. Deb Davis from Paws With A Cause was there with her entire family to help us at every turn. Ray Price and the staff at Ray Price Harley- Davidson welcomed us back with a great open-house type of event sponsored by Ray Price H-D, Cindy Mease of Irwin Mortgage, Irina Bennett with Keller Williams Realty and much of the food was donated by Raleigh HOG Activities Director Steve Metz. Led by April Fort and Annette Rowan, the Hogs For Dogs volunteers spent long hours to coordinate the event which came off wonderfully. Red Roof Inn also threw in some sponsorship via thier deep discounts on rooms for our out-of-town visitors. Thanks one and all!

It is also one of those events that will require many more words than I can fit in this scrolling text message. So, give me a few days to put the whole story together and I promise to share the whole story, give you all the juicy details and attempt to thank everyone who made it possible.

---- IF YOU WANT A 2004 MAX & BAILEY CALENDAR, ORDER SOON. THEY ARE SELLING FAST! ----

WE'RE ALSO LOOKING FOR SCHOOLS, CIVIC GROUPS OR BUSINESSES INTERESTED IN HELPING US SELL CALENDARS IN THEIR LOCAL AREAS. IF YOU WANT TO HELP US SELL CALENDARS, SEND US AN EMAIL TODAY.

Photos-of-the-Day : (1) Bailey at Britt Motorsports (2) Scott and Debbie Britt (3) Amber Zeller of WWAY-TV 3 in Wilmington covers the story at Britt Motorsports (4) Pat Nowak from Carolina Canines rides the final miles with Blaine and Max (5) The long row of bikes at our first rest area (6) Some special friends (Andy Blum, Jesse and Diane) (7) Raleigh's WB-22 catches up with us at the second rest area (8) The number of bikes grow at the 2nd rest stop (9) Kami Carmann interviews Janet about the ride (10) Paws With A Cause team pose with the Hogs For Dogs team (11) The Director of NLMAD, Karen, at Ray Price H-D (12) Sam poses with us in her wheelchair at Ray Price, but she rode to the event on the back of one of the escorting bikes.

There are HUNDREDS more photos that were taken by others at the event. Look for them as part of my full write up in the coming days. If you've waited this long to make a donation, now's the time.

Independence is still on sale in our online company store. Buy anything in the store and know that your purchases are helping fuel the hopes of people with disabilities across the country. Will this be the year that they get their Assistance Dog for Christmas? It may be - with your help!


Copyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, Inc



Copyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, Inc



Copyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, IncCopyright 2004 - U.S. Hogs For Dogs, Inc


 
 
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