Passport to Poconos – The Latin Bikers in the Poconos

 

Dear friend,

One of the best things about Latin cultures is the ‘togetherness’. We always find a way of sharing something and being together. Here is one of the groups that brought that through their love of bikes.

It was a Saturday morning and I was waiting my turn to be seated in Perkins when I saw a number of people dressed in biker outfits: jeans, boots and black vests with lots of badges sewn on, including the word LAMA.  That stands for Latin American Motorcycle Association. The moment I hear “Latin” in the Poconos, it’s a new opportunity to meet someone connected to my original culture and speak Spanish.

I told the bikers about my weekly radio show and they were eager to come.  I found out their group organizes many community events, but no one had ever invited them to a radio show.

“I’m a Nuyorikan” said Jay, AKA “El Jefe” (The Boss), the VP of the group (referring to his original Puerto Rican roots although he was born and raised in New York). That’s how the New York /Puerto Ricans refer to themselves.

“We are an International Humanist Motorcycle Association,” biker Roberto told me. “What does that mean?” I asked my curiosity spiked. I always thought of bikers as tough dudes who roared through town and refused to let you pass on the highway.

Robert (President) and Jay referred to their members as “brothers” and “sisters” and stressed their family oriented values. They told me about the community events they support and the yearly grant they give to a student “Do you have to be a Latin to belong to the club?” I asked.” “No,” Roberto replied, “What you need to have a 650cc bike and be accepted by the ‘Chapter’ (as they call their clubs), after a trial period. We also have female riders whom we call “Damas” (ladies), and we accept every nationality, race, gender, age. We´re open to anyone who shares our values.

Behind their biker looks, I found kind and sweet people willing to share their love for biking with humanitarian work in their community.

I asked Jay what it feels like riding a 650cc bike, He said you can´t describe it, but it’s the same rush a dog feels putting his head out of the window of a speeding car. With all the talk about good works and scholarships, I guess motorcycle riding is always going to be about the great feeling of freedom on the road. Our winding highways through the Poconos are perfect for bikes, and we´ve got biker hangouts like the Minisink Hotel to make sure bikers get properly hydrated.

I want to feel that wind. I´m going to put on my leathers and join the pack. I can see myself on the back of a big bike—the summer breeze through my hair–and then I wake up from my daydream and look outside at the five-foot piles of snow. Will spring ever come?

More about LAMA at: lamapocono.com

Christina´s radio show with a Latin flavor is every Sunday morning at 8:00 AM on Pocono 96.7. Tu Voz con Christina. Email: Christina@pocono967.com

                             

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