ATV riders

Riders kick up dust as they drive down the Hatfield-McCoy trails near Crumpler, recently. ‘The Hatfield-McCoy Ridin’ 4 a Cure’ will be returning to Highwall Park in Bramwell on Saturday, Sept. 21. The ATV benefit ride is organized to raise awareness about breast cancer, and money raised during the event will go to Wake Forest Baptist Hospital for research as well as the Princeton Community Hospital Foundation to help pay for the expenses of breast cancer patients.

BRAMWELL — The return of a local fundraiser to fight breast cancer and help patients is planned for next month.

The Ride for a Cure will once again be held at Highwall Park in Bramwell on Saturday, Sept. 21 and the event will be an ATV benefit ride and involve both local residents and tourists.

Called the Hatfield-McCoy Ridin’ 4 A Cure, Matt Hodock, owner of What Supp.? Nutrition and Fitness in Princeton, and Dr. Randy Maxwell organized the event, which at one time was an annual tradition but had disbanded for several years.

“We got the idea in the fall of 2017 and talked about it through Christmas,” he said, adding that Maxwell’s wife contracted breast cancer and that had sparked the conversation.

The ride was held last October after the July death of Maxwell’s wife.

“We knew more than ever we needed to keep going with the event,” Hodock said, and an all-our effort was undertaken.

Hodock said money raised will go to Wake Forest Baptist Hospital, where Maxwell’s wife was treated, for research and also to help with the Princeton Community Hospital Foundation to pay for travel and other expenses for breast cancer patients.

A wig service is in place, he said, but “we want to expand it,” with its own building and even include massages, much like a day spa for patients.

“We want to get something like Harvey’s in Beckley,” he said, so patients don’t have to travel to have wigs fitted and shaped by a stylist.

The event also drew the attention of Jamie Null, executive director of the Mercer County Convention and Visitors Bureau, as well as Four Wheeler Heaven ATV resort in Coaldale.

“They are bringing it back,” Null said of the Ride for a Cure event at Highwall Park.

“We have just been helping them connect to the ATV community and just creating some introductions and trying to get some buzz of excitement for the event,” she said. “Mercer County has never had an ATV event to cater to both locals and visitors. So we are happy to see the Ride for a Cure and hope that it will grow each year.”

Null said the Mercer County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau worked with the event organizers to put them in contact with local ATV industry representatives.

“We hooked them up by connecting with people in the industry,” Null said. “Out of that it was born. We are bringing it back into a modern era.”

Four Wheeler Heaven owner Michael Constantino said in a press release his resort is adding barrel racing and a mud bog to the one-day event at the park.

“This former mining site is a hidden gem that more than 15 years ago hosted an ATV festival featuring barrel racing, mud bogging and many other events, way before the Hatfield-McCoy Trails were even in our area,” he said. “We were there way back then and are proud to be bringing back parts of the old Freedom Motorsports ATV Rally to next month’s Ridin’ 4 A Cure. Pre-registration is only $25, so come on down and show off your riding skills, take in the action from the sideline, or just have fun getting muddy for a good cause.”

Constantino said Sandy Jay Bailey with Hillbilly Heaven Trail Guide Service LLC will be providing guided tours of the Hatfield-McCoy Trails during Ridin’ 4 A Cure, offering a way to explore the trails with a local rider “who knows every nook and cranny of our area trails. “

Guided rides and trail rides will start at 7:30 a.m., the barrel race and mud bog will start at 1 p.m., with food served at 5:30 p.m..

Hodock said the band Chosen Road will provide entertainment after dinner and door prizes will take place all evening after food is served.

A $25,000 side-by-side will also be won when keys are sold and one of them of them will fit, he added.

Hodock said all activities are held at Highwall Park with registration for the ride starting at 7 a.m.

“The Pocahontas Trailhead (of the Hatfield-McCoy ATV Trail System) is literally only 2,500 feet across the road (Rt. 52) from the park,” he said.

“I truly think the ATV Rally was way before its time, and my hope is that the annual Ridin 4 A Cure event can become the ‘Trailfest of the South,” Constantino said..

— Contact Charles Boothe at cboothe@bdtonline.com