Belmar, N.J., Jan. 1—For the past 10 years, some of my friends from central New Jersey have gotten together for a ride on the morning or January 1. Whether there was snow, ice, rain, or sleet, without fail, this intrepid bunch of guys have braved the elements to welcome the New Year. Last year was the first time the group got together without our good friend Richie Pan in their midst; he and his buddy Mike had been taken from us in a tragic accident six months prior.
The 2015 ride was a resounding success, and, as a first-timer, I enjoyed it immensely. This year, the guys changed things up a bit to allow more people to participate. Early New Year’s morning, we met at the Jackson, New Jersey, Moose Lodge, where the gracious lodge people provided us with complimentary coffee and orange juice. Some of us ordered hot breakfast to fortify us for that day’s ride.
We saddled up around 10:30 a.m. and our group of about 45 motorcyclists headed in a northeasterly direction, riding about 25 miles of back roads through Ocean and Monmouth Counties. By the time we hit the road, temperatures were in the mid to high 40s, and the sun was shining. It was a fine day for a motorcycle ride, and we breathed in the ocean air as we rode the last few miles along the Jersey shore before arriving at 10th Ave. Burrito Co. in Belmar.
The ride was free, but if you wanted to enjoy the buffet brunch, your first PBR, and a T-shirt, the cost was $30. 10th Ave. Burrito opened up their covered and heated patio bar where they offered a bounteous buffet with everything from bagels and fresh fruit to more robust offerings such as pancakes and French toast, chicken and waffles, sausage and bacon, potatoes, and biscuits and gravy. And cooked-to-order omelets!
Those who didn’t go on the ride met the rest of us at 10th Ave. Burrito around noon. Festivities continued into the afternoon; the popular shore spot was just approved for a year-round liquor license so the bar was hopping! The restaurant offers delicious Mexi-Cali-style food and was even featured on the popular Food Network show Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives.
Raffle tickets were sold and mid-afternoon, two winning numbers were called, with each winner awarded a large bag filled with goodies donated by Bel-Ray, Tattooville, 10th Ave. Burrito, and other sponsors. The day’s proceeds were donated to the Aidan Jack Seeger Foundation.
Shortly afterward, people started drifting off, with some planning to continue the festivities at other destinations. All in all, it was a fabulous way to kick off the New Year.