Kaua’i motorcyclists help keiki

LIHU’E — More than 150 motorcycle enthusiasts turned out on the lawn of the historic county building Sunday for the annual Keiki Motorcycle Run.

That number exceeded Russell Haluapo’s expectations, and the toys collected from the run filled a covered truck.

“This year, we’re going to distribute the toys to individual families, the YWCA Family Abuse Shelter, and the Lihu’e Court,” Haluapo said.

The caravan was headed up by Santa and Mrs. Claus, who made their rounds through the sea of motorcycles that overflowed the county parking lot and lined both sides of Eiwa Street.

“It’s the cheapest ride in town,” one motorcyclist said as the thunderous symphony of engines starting up signalled the start of the ride.

With Santa and Haluapo heading up the front, the convoy moved through Hardy Street, down Rice Street through Nawiliwili before connecting with Kaumualii Highway for the ride to Waimea.

“Some people wanted to go to Koke’e, but I don’t know if that’s going to happen,” one rider said.

Haluapo, who doesn’t really know when he got involved in organizing this annual event, modestly said that he is only a small part of it. It’s the riders who turn out that make it the success it is, he said.

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