Craven Charity Ride A Success

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HICKORY, N.C. - Ricky Craven hosted his 7th Annual Snowmobile Ride for Charity on Saturday, January 31, 2004 in Greenville, Maine. Craven, through the generous support of the riders and businesses involved, raised $253,500 for various charities, the largest amount he has ever raised in one year.

Over 575 riders participated in the ride this year (the largest number they have hosted to date), and for a donation of $125, each rider shared in a 60-mile snowmobile ride through the hills of Moosehead Lake, an autograph session with Ricky and owner of PPI Motorsports, Cal Wells, and received breakfast and lunch. Around 500 prizes were given away thanks to the sponsors of the event: Arctic Cat, Tide, VIP Discount Auto, Brake Service and Wal-Mart. In addition, there were special raffle items given away, including a 2003 GMC Truck, an Arctic Cat ATV, and an Arctic Cat snowmobile.

Five charities received a sum of $48,500 each: The Marrow Foundation, the international leader in the facilitation of unrelated marrow and blood stem cell transplantation; Children's Miracle Network, an International non-profit organization dedicated to helping children by raising funds and awareness for 170 children's hospitals throughout North America; The Make-A-Wish Foundation of Maine and New Hampshire, a foundation that grants the wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses in order to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy; The Travis Roy Foundation, a foundation designed to help with care and research for victims of paralysis, created on behalf of Travis Roy who was paralyzed in his first shift in his first college hockey game; Give Kids the World, a charity that allows children with life-threatening illnesses and their families to stay in a special village and enjoy the many Central Florida theme parks and attractions. Additional donations were made to Moosehead Riders Snowmobile Club and to the Greenville school system.

For his charitable work, Craven was the recipient of the 2003 NASCAR USG Person of the Year award, which recognizes a driver for his off-track efforts. In addition to the award, Craven was given $100,000, all of which he donated to the charity ride ($50,000 of which went to the charity ride and the other $50,000 was split between the five charities before the event, each receiving $10,000 before the charity ride donation). Over the seven-year history of the ride, Craven has been able to donate a total sum of $820,110 to the charities involved.

"This year's snowmobile ride was so rewarding," said Craven. "It gets bigger and better every year, and I am so grateful to everyone that supports this cause, because it takes a lot of people to make it successful. I want to thank everyone from the riders to the corporate sponsors who make this possible, but there are many people behind the scenes that donate their time and hard work to make this event so great. From the committee that works all year long on this, to the workers of the event including the talented trail groomers, I cannot thank each of them enough for their efforts. I want to also recognize my mother, Nancy, who spends all her time making this event a success. I'm very blessed that we have so many people who believe in this cause and I hope we can continue to grow this event year after year because it really does touch so many lives!"

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