Owners to show off vintage motorcycles, raise funds for adolescent asthma education

Asthma and vintage motorcycles may seem like unlikely partners, but that’s not how Rick Barnes sees it.

The Western Colorado Vintage Motorcycle Association is holding a vintage motorcycle rally June 20 at Gateway Canyons Resort to raise funds for asthma education for School District 51 nursing staff and other personnel.

A vintage motorcycle is 25 years or older.

Barnes wanted to raise awareness about adolescent asthma. He loves motorcycles, so that is how the idea of holding a rally was formed.

Gateway Canyons Resort has been a great partner, Barnes said. The resort is offering reduced room rates for people who want to come to the motorcycle rally and stay in Gateway.

A portion of June 20 proceeds from the resort’s car museum will be donated to District 51 for asthma education.

Gateway School is in District 51.

Barnes is hoping to raise at least $10,000.

His interest in asthma education for District 51 personnel is personal. His daughter, Lauryn Barnes, was diagnosed with asthma when she was 18 months old. Now a student at Grand Junction High School, Lauryn takes six asthma medications daily.

Barnes wants to ensure Lauryn and other students with asthma in District 51 have adults around them knowledgeable in the treatment of asthma and in the warning signs of a potentially fatal asthma attack.

“In every school she’s been in, she’s been the training for them,” Barnes said of his daughter’s experience with District 51 medical personnel. “The older she gets, the better she gets with recognizing how she needs to treat it, but little kids? They just want to play.”

Barnes said he has never faulted District 51 for its treatment of Lauryn. The district has a limited amount of financial resources to pay for teachers, textbooks, training, etc., he said.

“I understand they don’t have the money in their budget,” Barnes said. “But when kids can’t breathe, that’s not good news.”

The money raised at the motorcycle rally will help pay for an all-day training workshop for an estimated 70 employees of District 51.

Riders are expected from Mesa County and out-of-state, Barnes said, based on interest he has received from other vintage motorcycle owners.

The rally will include food, music and movies. It was created to be a family-friendly event.

Those unable to attend the rally but still interested in donating to District 51 for asthma education for staff can make donations to School District 51, attention Jeff Kirtland, 2115 Grand Ave., Grand Junction 81501.


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