What: Law enforcement will end their three-day scooter ride for charity in Helen.
When: 1 p.m. Sunday
A slow and silly scooter ride through Georgia is on its way here. Leading the pack are a bunch of otherwise serious law men.
Oconee County Sheriff Scott Berry, Camden County Sheriff Tommy Gregory and Harris County Sheriff Mike Jolley have joined a group of 14 scooter riders who have pledged to have fun for kids. They are calling their inaugural event the F.R.O.G. Run — Fools Ride Over Georgia. Money raised will benefit the Georgia Sheriffs’ Youth Homes.
“They are bound and determined to finish this thing,” said volunteer Don Head of Lawrenceville.
He spoke by cellphone as he rode in a truck hitched to a 28-foot trailer filled with spare parts, tires and scooters. He and fellow volunteer Bob Redner of Johns Creek are in charge of road maintenance — and patience.
“It is a little bit frustrating going so slow,” Head said, with a laugh. “When you have a scooter that goes 30 miles per hour on the flat ground and you go up hill, it’s just a little slower.”
The caravan ahead of him started winding its way north from Kingsland around 9:15 a.m. Friday. The April Fools Day launch continues today with the second leg scheduled to travel from Swainsboro to Athens. The three-day event concludes Sunday in Helen, where White County Sheriff’s deputies are ready to assist.
“The scooter race should be in our county around 1 p.m.,” said Capt. Jim Couch, White County spokesman.
The F.R.O.G. itinerary posted on the Web expects the scooters to travel on U.S. Route 441 to Cornelia, followed by Ga. Highway 105 to Ga. 17 into Helen.
“We are just catching intersections,” White said. “Sheriff (Neal Walden) said he might come and catch an intersection.”
The Georgia Sheriffs’ Association’s Mike Leathers and Sgt. Manny Quinones of Houston County Sheriff’s Office organized the 425-mile ride, which they’ve billed as a record breaker of some kind.
The Georgia Sheriffs’ Youth Homes is a nonprofit charity operated by the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association. The centers provide a host of services for mostly at-risk children who may be products of abuse or neglect.
Fundraisers sponsored by participating sheriff’s offices throughout the state support the cause every year, with the Hall County Sheriff’s Office raising money through its spring golf tournament and motorcycle ride event in the fall.
The support for the unusual F.R.O.G. ride was evident on day one, Head said, with citizens stopping and gawking at the awkward scooter riders.
Of course, deputies supported the ride, too, with the Houston County Sheriff’s Office in the lead.
“We’ve had blue light escorts the whole way. Any time we get through any town of any size, the local sheriff drops in and gives us escort,” Head said. “The biggest majority of them have never been on a scooter. Of course it’s not a hard thing to learn, but it’s a unique experience.”