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Ride to Clyde celebrates four professions, reaches $1 million mark

Updated: 6 days ago

Nine years ago, a new volunteer-led charity ride began modestly but triumphantly. The 50-plus motorcyclists that participated in the inaugural "Ride to Clyde" in 2016 raised more than $19,000 for those served by Baptist Children's Homes (BCH)—almost triple the event's goal.

At the conclusion of this year's ride on May 11, 2024, event co-founders Brian Davis and Rit Varriale unveiled an oversized check for $235,064—the total raised for the ninth-annual ride by its 147 participants. The amount is the highest total raised in a single year. In addition, it put Ride to Clyde's lifetime fundraising total over the $1 million mark.

"We had talked a number of year's ago, once we saw how God was growing this (event), that perhaps we could bring in $1 million by the tenth year," said Varriale who also serves as Head Pastor of Elizabeth Baptist Church in Shelby. "It's awesome. The Lord is good."

Ride to Clyde is carried out in partnership between BCH and NC Baptists. The statewide ride, which begins at Oak Island on the east coast and ends at BCH's Broyhill Home in the mountains of Clyde, has grown to include a second route that travels throughout Western NC. The three-day motorcycle ride raises funds, creates awareness and, most of all, shares the love of Jesus with BCH's children and intellectually/developmentally disabled adults as well as people motorcyclists encounter as they travel.

This year, a group of riders saw four people make decisions to follow Christ as they had opportunities to share their faith.

"Every year there's something different about the ride that stands out. This year it was the evangelistic side," explained Dean Greene, member of Brookstone Church in Weaverville. Riders in his group shared the Gospel with two waitresses and two convenience store clerks who made professions.

"There was no guessing about it—these were God moments," Greene concluded.

Next year celebrates Ride to Clyde's 10th anniversary. Learn more about participating and giving to the effort at

Written by Blake Ragsdale, Vice President of Communications

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