Runs. That's what bikers do. They hop on their hogs, crotch rockets or whatever slang they use to describe their favorite hunk of motorized steel and go on runs. Sometimes they even do it in a good cause. That's the case on Saturday, August 20, when the Salt River District of the Modified Motorcycle Association kick-starts its Fourth Annual East Valley/Apache Junction Night Poker Run, a fund raiser for the Maricopa County Task Force for Domestic Abuse. But don't go expecting the Hells Angels or other extremists. The SRDMMA folks are actually nice -- so nice that they even allow four-wheeled vehicles (autos, dune buggies, what have you) to join in. Unheard of.
But the more participants, the better, as funds are raised from entry fees. The run starts at Captain's, 300 West Apache Trail in Apache Junction, and ends at T.J.'s Bar & Grill, 1734 East Main in Mesa. Entrants will draw a card at each stop in between, and those with winning high and low hands will be rewarded with a cash prize. SRDMMA coordinator Carol Everidge hopes that this and future events will help to "create a more positive perception of the biker community." Start time is 6 p.m., and the entry fee is $6. Call 602-317-9019. -- Amy Young
Night time is the right time
The coolest thing about a moonlight summer hike (aside from the coolness itself) is seeing the desert in a whole new light. For neophytes, especially, the sight of an ocotillo creating multi-armed moonshadows or a saguaro glowing like burnished silver is stunning. You might even stumble across a nocturnal critter scampering (or slithering) about on the desert washboard. How cool is that? The Summer Moon Hike starts at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, August 20, at the 40th Street Mountain Preserve, 9200 North 40th Street. The ranger-led trek is four to five miles, and is rated as moderate. Good boots, water, snacks and a flashlight are recommended. The hike is free, but preregistration is required. Call 602-495-0222. -- Clay McNear