Local Bikers Helping Students

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Charlotte, MI - A bathroom fist fight quickly erupted into gunfire at this restaurant in Waco, Texas, leaving 9 dead, 18 wounded and around 170 bikers in police custody.

The so-called Texas "Biker Brawl" over the weekend grabbed national attention, leaving people shocked by the violence when 5 motorcycle gangs met up.

But bikers here in Mid-Michigan are calling the brawl in Texas an isolated incident.

"This is an exception to the rule of what typically happens with motorcycle clubs," says Badge Velasquez, founder of Bikers for books."

These are parents, veterans, and more that belong to motorcycle clubs, and they say they are just like any large group.

"You're going to find a few people that are going to ride on the outer edges or the fringes if you will," he says.

And when it comes to these Mid-Michigan bikers, never judge a book by it's cover.

"Motorcycles are something that we love, but also we understand the importance of reading and literacy," says Velasquez.

"Bikers for Books" get kids excited about reading. For almost 3 years now, the bikers have been visiting schools and donating books.

"A lot of kids look at Badge when he walks in like 'what is he going to talk about?' and then we he starts talking about reading," says Badge's wife Kendra Velasquez who does marketing for the group, "they just, they look at him like 'oh my gosh!'"

They want kids to know that all kinds of people enjoy reading, plus the leather, tattoos and Harley bikes only help the cause.

"It draws attention and we know that, and we want to use that for our hook," says Badge.

The bikers for books want to make a positive impact on the community.

"One of these little kids that we've met can say someday that the bikers made them smile, the bikers made them read," says Badge.

If you're looking to donate books or help the cause in any way, visit the Bikers for Books Facebook page.

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