Police & Fire

VIDEO: 'Blue Knights in the Woods' Roll into Clark

Blue Knights in the Woods, Clark NJ 2017 Credits: Daniel Collins
Groups of motorcycles lined up for the start of the motorcycle procession ride that took place. Riders left at about 11:00 a.m. and came back at about 12:30 p.m. Credits: Daniel Collins
The Blue Knights New Jersey III had their annual "Knights in the Woods" event in the Detuscher Club in Clark, New Jersey on Sunday, August 6, 2017. Credits: Daniel Collins
People arrive at the Detuscher Club in their motorcycles in preparation for the events on Sunday, August 6, 2017. Credits: Daniel Collins
Special Events Coordinator Jeff Joy talking to the people in attendance at the Detuscher Club, has been running the event for the past four years. Credits: Daniel Collins
Lines of parked motorcycles lined up on one section of the Detuscher Club in Clark, New Jersey before the motorcycle procession. Credits: Daniel Collins
A wreath hanging from the wall with blue streamers of the pavilion during the special ceremony that took place involving the Marine Corps and the fallen law enforcement officer prayer service. Credits: Daniel Collins
The bagpipes were played during the memorial remembrance for the special ceremony, followed by the Honor Guard members of the John Bassilone Detachment No. 190, consisting of former marines. Credits: Daniel Collins
Joseph Caruso, the Goodwill Ambassador for the Blue Knights New Jersey VIII, led the ceremony in a prayer service. He says he's always had a lifelong respect and admiration for police officers. Credits: Daniel Collins
A motorcycle carrying an American flag, a Thin Blue Line flag and a Blue Knights flag, as they all line up for the motorcycle procession ride on Sunday, August 6, 2017. Credits: Daniel Collins
The banner for the event posted right near the entrance to the Detuscher Club. Credits: Daniel Collins
The motorcycle procession ride took place at 11:00 a.m. and went through Union and Somerset counties, up to the Watchung Reservation. It totaled a 50-mile run. Credits: Daniel Collins
The motorcycle riders all gathered up together before starting up for the motorcycle ride procession. Credits: Daniel Collins
A Union County Police car and a Clark Police car were part of the motorcycle procession ride that took place on Sunday, August 6, 2017 from the Detuscher Club. Credits: Daniel Collins
Groups of riders gathered for the start of the motorcycle procession ride. Escorts included a Union County Police car, a Clark Police car and an ambulance. Credits: Daniel Collins
The Ruff Edges performed live music in the pavilion for the people throughout the afternoon, when the barbecue was underway. Credits: Daniel Collins
Blue Knights shirts and sweatshirts were being sold near the entrance of the Detuscher Club. Credits: Daniel Collins
Police apparel was sold in various points throughout the Detuscher Club. Credits: Daniel Collins

CLARK, NJ - The Blue Knights New Jersey III held their annual Knights in the Woods motorcycle event at the Deutscher Club on Sunday, August 6.

The 50 mile motorcycle run raises money for the Valerie fund, which benefits children fighting cancer.  Current and retired members of law enforcement make up the membership of the Blue Knights.

Clark resident, Jeff Joy is the Special Events Coordinator for the Clark run.  “We’re working for the Valerie Fund, which benefits children with cancer and blood disorders, we’re hoping that a lot of people support us,” Joy said. “The more people come to support us, the more money we can donate to the charity.”

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The day began with motorcycles filling the lot of the Deutscher Club as riders readied for the day ahead.  

A short time later the sound of bagpipes overtook the event as the Marine Corps Honor Guard, from the unit, John Bassilone Detachment No. 190, joined in a special ceremony honoring law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty. A moment of silence was also held during the prayer service.

Joseph Caruso, the Goodwill Ambassador for the Blue Knights New Jersey VIII, delivered the invocation and the pre-ride blessing. 

 “It’s been a very difficult past couple of years for law enforcement across the entire country,” Caruso said. “I think that tide is changing, but this is what the biker community and law enforcement motorcycle clubs do.”

“We come together and give back and help others,” Caruso added. “I think it’s important whenever you see a police officer [to thank them for their service]. I am not a police officer; I’m just the Goodwill Ambassador for New Jersey VIII. I’ve had a lifelong respect and admiration and most of all, gratitude for law enforcement.”

Following the prayer service, 235 motorcycle enthusiast filed out of the Deutscher Club flanked in a series of flashing lights escorting the riders through Union and Somerset Counties and up to the Watchung Reservation.

Union County and Clark police, along with eight motorcycle officers, 20 civilian road guards, an honor guard from a few of their brother-chapters,  civilians and additional law enforcement from across the tri-state area were a part of the day’s event.

“We have a lot of sub-groups and we have over 13 chapters in New Jersey that come and support us,” Joy said. “We have lots of other groups, the Knights of Fire, the Firefighters Brotherhood and Dawn Patrol. These are all other motorcycle clubs that come to help us. We, in turn, will help them during their charity.”

Bikers returned to the club after noon in time for the barbeque and bar to open.   Raffles were held and live music was played by the Ruff Edges.

Upon return to the Deutscher Club, riders expressed the pride they felt by taking part in the motorcycle run even when they didn’t know most of the people.

“The most important part of it is that it’s a bunch of people who have absolutely nothing in common, but motorcyclists get together and do something for charity,” one biker known only as Chris said.

“My favorite part is the camaraderie, everybody, it’s just the people,” one biker identified as Roger said. “You never know who you run into. It could be people you haven’t seen in a while and just to help out with whatever the cause is, it’s the most important part of the ride.”

 

 

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