COVENANT BLU-GRAND CENTER – “Empowering women with the hope to heal” – that’s the message and mission that a local nonprofit and the All-Female Unity Ride are taking to the streets here this weekend.
Hosted by the St. Louis, Memphis and Texas All Female Ride committees, the ride is bringing together women who love motorcycles and the open road, and who pour that passion into helping other women.
Tiffany Tate of Florissant is the executive director of the Ride4Hope Foundation STL, a nonprofit she founded to assist breast cancer patients with advocacy, early detection education and direct financial support for women with or without health insurance. Tate is spearheading the ride here, linking up with the other states’ groups to raise awareness of issues important to women’s health and well being including sickle cell disease and domestic violence.
The event is free, but all the groups hope to raise resources as well as awareness for their charities.
Letting women know help is available can be difficult, especially as the coronavirus pandemic is limiting contacts.
“I’ve gotten grants,” Tate said Friday while setting up registration tables on the parking lot of the Pear Tree hotel, 2211 Market Street, to welcome out-of-town participants. Her foundation has also received some crisis funding to pay workers during the coronavirus pandemic. But, she said, “I have to look for people to help,” and she hopes the All-Female Unity Ride will help spread the word.
But this weekend is about fun, too, as the motorcycle aficionados get together to swap stories, show off their rides and explore St. Louis.Strictly speaking, this year’s ride isn’t a ride – it’s a party. Or, as Tate says, a gala – a socially distancing, mask-wearing, COVID-19-conscious gala with its highlight a gathering in the street outside the Moto Museum, 3441 Olive Street.
“We’re calling it a gala because it’s at the Moto Museum, and that’s fancy,” Tate said with a smile.
The street party gala begins at 1 p.m. Saturday and includes a Sound & Bike Grudge Competition beginning at 2 p.m.