Motorcycle event seeks to raise awareness about drug abuse

There will be many more motorcycles than normal around the Mid-Ohio Harley Davidson Dealership at 2100 Quality Lane in Springfield on Saturday, as part of the statewide Solace on the Solstice, a motorcycle rally to raise awareness of opiate abuse.

“It is our hope that our pre-rally event will raise awareness of the increasing opiate issues in Clark County and bring the rate of abuse and unintentional deaths down,” said Pat Banaszak, director of Family and Youth Initiatives. “Opiate abuse isn’t an individual issue, it’s everyone’s issue and it knows no bounds.”

The Springfield celebration begins at 8:30 a.m. with a pancake breakfast, family-friendly activities and live music continuing until noon. Tracey Preston and Bikers for Christ will pray over the riders and bless the motorcycles before the group departs at 10:30 for the A.D. Farrow Harley Davidson Dealership in Columbus

The local pre-rally event will also include a display of hundreds of motorcycles, as well as offer games for participants, including jousting and a mechanical bull, and merchandise and food vendors. Special guest speakers will share information about prescription drug abuse and local organizations involved in drug abuse prevention and recovery.

Banaszak also points out the Clark County Sheriff’s Office’s recently acquired van used as a mobile collection vehicle for prescription drugs will be on hand, making one of its first appearances, so she encourages people to bring unneeded medications.

To make the event possible, Drug Free Action Alliance partnered with local organizations, including Cole’s Warriors/Family and Youth Initiatives in Springfield, Coalition for a Drug-Free Greater Cincinnati and SOLACE in Portsmouth.

Money raised through the ride will support substance abuse prevention efforts throughout Ohio.

The cost for the motorcycle rally is $20 per rider, $10 per passenger, and participants will receive an event T-shirt and lunch at A.D. Farrow Co.

Registration can be submitted at There is no cost to attend the event at A.D. Farrow. Everyone is welcome and no motorcycle is needed.

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