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Operation Sandbox holds motorcycle ride

CONYERS - Motorcycle riders will be revving their engines for a good cause on Saturday.

Operation Sandbox, a nonprofit organization that sends care packages to troops overseas, will hold a motorcycle ride/fundraiser at Granite Mountain Harley-Davidson of Conyers that day. Proceeds will go to purchase supplies for soldiers and postage to mail packages.

Registration begins at 9 a.m. and festivities will kick off at 10 a.m. with the National Anthem and speeches by military VIPs. The ride will begin at approximately 10:45 a.m.

Former Atlanta Falcons player Chris Doleman will be the grand marshal for the ride, which will be approximately an hour long and wind its way through Rockdale, Newton and Walton counties.

The event will be videotaped and sent in care packages to the troops, according to Operation Sandbox Director Virginia Pearson. Some soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan will also be able to view the ride live online, she said.

The ride will end back at Harley Davidson, where participants can enjoy entertainment by Elvis and Johnny Cash impersonators and Archmen Band, an oldies group.

There will also be food vendors and raffles. The grand prize is a 40-inch flat screen TV.

Free T-shirts and pins will be provided while supplies last.

Registration must be done the day of the event. The cost is $20 per rider and $10 per passenger.

Pearson said she hopes the event will raise awareness about Operation Sandbox as the holiday season approaches. While donations of supplies are always welcome, she said monetary donations are especially needed so she can purchase some of the larger ticket items requested by troops, such as microwaves, refrigerators and other appliances.

For more information, call 770-784-9155 or visit www.operationsandboxga.com.

Crystal Tatum can be reached at crystal.tatum@newtoncitizen.com.