Local motorcycle club riding the extra mile for good cause  

The senior prom represents a peak high school experience for many students, a sendoff creating lasting memories with their classmates for one final time.  

But some parts of that experience can be taken for granted – not every student is in a situation where she is able to afford to purchase a prom dress, threatening to derail the chance to participate in that memorable and special night.  

That’s where the Vicious Ryderz Motorcycle Club comes in. The Hahnville-based group has organized the Glam 4 Good collection drive and giveaway, focusing on gathering donations of lightly worn prom attire and bridesmaids dresses to give to students in need of an assist.  

The idea behind the drive is simple: that every girl deserves a dream prom.  

“It’s something I’ve wanted to do, but I knew I needed help,” said April Betz, who is the treasurer of the Ryderz. “My daughter is going to prom this year and I learned some students couldn’t afford dresses. I looked in my closet and saw my old bridesmaid and prom dresses and realized, ‘OK, we can do this.’”

The help Betz needed to put it all together came once she joined the motorcycle club, finding that she and the club members not only shared interest in a hobby but also in helping to make their community a better place.  

“We always try to give back however we can,” said James Hill, president of the Ryderz. “We did a school drive last year and this year we’re trying to put this together with the prom dresses. April had this idea to help some little girls in need and we immediately jumped on that.”

Hill said they’ve collected between 15 and 20 dresses so far and he and Betz both said the response to the outreach has been very positive.

“It’s been overwhelming to me, actually,” Betz said. “It just means a lot. Not everyone can afford a dress, and to have so many come together as a community and help to put a smile on even just one girl’s face means the world to me.”

Once the dresses are collected, the group plans to have the dresses cleaned – group members are donating money toward that and the club is hoping to find a dry cleaning business that will assist with the cause.

From there, if a high school student needs a dress and there are dresses available, they will be able to pick one out at the Ryderz Hahnville clubhouse.  

“There’s no cost behind it at all for them – it’s just pick out the dress and it’s yours,” Hill said, adding that they aren’t limiting the assistance to only Hahnville and Destrehan high school students. “For Hahnville, Destrehan or really any school, if a young lady needs a dress and we have one, you can come get it.”
While they may be “vicious” when they take to the road, these bikers have a soft spot for helping the younger generation.

 “We’re not asking anyone to go out and buy a dress. Check in your closet. Mardi Gras just passed, people have been to a ball … maybe you’ve got something taking up closet space. Someone can repurpose that, and you can bring a smile to a young lady’s face,” said Hill.  

Dress drop off dates are March 17, 24 and 31 from 5:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. at 15661 River Road in Hahnville, Suite A. Pick up date will be April 12 from noon to 2 p.m.  

For more information, one may call (504) 717-3039. 

 

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