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Bikers look out for furry friends, hold fundraiser

Submitted Photo Jeff "Butter" Behrens sits with his rescue cats, Checkers and Marvin, on Friday.

A local bikers club will be hosting its ninth annual “Furry Friends” Biker Ball on Saturday, March 2, at Planet Pizza and Sports on Tap from 6 p.m.-1 a.m.

The B.A.S.T.A.R.D.S. Riding Club originated in Billings, Montana, and members decided to start a chapter in Minot. According to the club’s social media pages, its main goal is to promote a positive perception of bikers in the community.

Minot chapter president Jeff “Butter” Behrens has organized the “Furry Friends” Biker Ball to raise funds for smaller animal rescues in the local area.

“We started this back in 2016. That was the first one, and back then, nobody was really doing anything for the animals,” he said. They decided to do something about that and threw their first Furry Friends Biker Ball. It has been a yearly event since then.

Many of the animal rescues that are run out of a person’s house, garage or shop do not get the same amount of funding as the bigger rescues with their own facilities. The bikers wanted to do what they could for those who go the extra mile to help animals in need.

During the 2023 Biker Ball, the riding club raised $4,000 and split it among all the rescues that were on its donation list.

In previous years, they held a gift card auction. I. Keating’s Furniture World had donated some furniture and paintings for a silent auction as well.

Some of the rescues from the Minot area attended and brought animals that were up for adoption to increase their chances of finding their forever homes.

The event also was held at a hotel, but complications arose for this year’s ball. Behrens expressed disappointment over the original plan falling through, crushing his hope that animals could socialize with people and have some time outside of the rescue.

On March 2, the event is being held in Room 221 at Planet Pizza. It is open to the public, but because of stairway access to Sports on Tap, attending citizens must be at least 21 years of age.

Upon entry, attendees purchase tickets to drop into bags for the ticket and dessert raffles. They can buy as many tickets to enter as they desire.

It is a casual event with a cash bar.

A varied assortment of items will be up for silent auction. Baskets are sometimes put together and donated, as well as some homemade desserts for a dessert raffle. Behrens said a good portion of the desserts likely will be homemade, as the bikers ask their friends and family to help donate for their cause.

The silent auction and dessert raffle will both take place from 6-9 p.m.

Behrens has listed the Animal Empowerment League, Hairball Haven, Purrfect Pound Pals, The Stray Sanctuary and For Belle’s Sake as recipients of this year’s fundraiser.

“We just want everybody to come out and have a good time,” he said.

In addition, the riders club will be holding a fundraising bike run this summer to raise more money for the area rescues. The date and time will be released later this year.

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