In just its second year, the 'Jerry Parins Cruise for Cancer' again was a huge success as several hundred bikers and Packers players and staff members hit the pavement for a worthy cause.
Parins, a motorcycle enthusiast from an early age, coordinated the first annual 'Cruise' just 16 months after being diagnosed with cancer. The 120-mile motorcycle ride raises money for various cancer-related organizations, many of which he encountered during his treatment at St. Vincent's Hospital in Green Bay.
On Saturday, Parins invited three cancer patients -- Dan Busse, Cody Carwardine and Kathy Miller -- to be his guests of honor.
"I was very happy that we had a safe ride -- over 100 miles," Parins said. "That was number one. The ride was about making money to help other organizations. But also what we were able to do was to make one very special day for three cancer families, with a lot of pictures and a lot of memories, and that is invaluable to Jerry Parins."
Parins' guests, along with Packers general manager Ted Thompson, kicked off the ride with the traditional, "Riders, start your engines!"
The three families then rode along with the bikers in a limousine from Lambeau Field to Vandervest Harley-Davidson in Peshtigo, Wis., where the first of two auctions was held. The group then returned to Lambeau Field for a 'tailgate party' which included food, beverages, live music and another live auction.
Among the Packers in attendance were executive vice president/COO John Jones, running back Najeh Davenport, defensive ends Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila and Aaron Kampman, fullback Vonta Leach, center Grey Ruegamer and tight end Ben Steele.
"There are so many sponsors and volunteers that I don't even know where to begin thanking people," Parins said. "We had the big sponsors and we also had the little sponsors. There are people that donated $10 and that was awesome.
"Also all the players and volunteers were just tremendous, everyone from the members of the Packers board of directors that helped me out to John Jones, who was there in the morning and then again serving beverages when we returned in the afternoon. It was just a fantastic day."