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Biker breakfast raises funds for Meade schools

August 5, 2018

STURGIS — Forgive Jared Simons if he looked a little bleary-eyed flipping pancakes at Sturgis Brown High School Friday morning.

Haying in Meade County is a delicate process and Simons’ family determined that the optimum time for baling the hay they had cut earlier this week was 10 p.m. Thursday.

The Simons, including senior Jared, worked until about 1:30 a.m. Friday on the ranch near Union Center putting up the hay.

Problem was Jared was supposed to be at the high school by 5:15 a.m. to work the biker breakfast.

“I set my alarm for 3 because I had to gas up my car before I headed to town,” he said.

The alarm went off, but Simons fell back asleep. His mom woke him about 5 a.m. and he made it to the school by 5:40.

“That’s no too bad,” he said of his arrival time while standing over a hot grill in the kitchen at the high school.

Simons is among a dozen students working the Rally breakfast this year. All but Simons are repeat workers.

This is Tara Reinert’s fourth year working the biker breakfast even though she graduated last May.

“I really liked working here. It’s a really good Rally job for me. It gives me a chance to work another job in the afternoon as well,” she said.

Reinert cleans up after diners. Others, like Simons, make the food, and still others serve the food. Funds raised are used for various items at the high school, whether it’s money for the band or choir programs, or new carpet for a student lounge area. The high school student council gives suggestions to the administration about how to spend the funds.

The breakfast is a buffet for $12 which includes eggs, pancakes, sausage, biscuits and gravy and French Toast. Diners also get their choice of juices as well as white or chocolate milk and coffee. Or, you can get the combo deal. For $16 you get the breakfast buffet and a shower at the high school.

On hand for the breakfast Friday were Marty and Nanci Parkhurst, and Rick and Paula White, all of Pueblo, Colo.

“We like to come here because it makes you feel like you are giving to a good cause,” Nanci Parkhurst said.

“We just wish they made dinner too,” Rick White said.

For many years, Mike Paris, Sturgis Brown High School activities director, would oversee the biker breakfast. Paris retired this year and left it in the hands of high school Principal Pete Wilson and new Activities Director Todd Palmer.

“It was a little nerve wracking to begin with, but life goes on,” Wilson said.

Paris didn’t just drop the ball. He helped the new crew transition by being on hand leading up to the event and on the first day of the breakfast Thursday.

“We’re feeling a little bit more comfortable after Day 1,” Wilson said.

Numbers were down Thursday. Last year on Day 1, the high schoolers served nearly 250 diners. This year it was 112.

“Our big numbers are usually Saturday, Sunday and Monday,” Wilson said.

Wilson said students pick up some valuable life skills working the breakfasts.

“These kids learn a lot about hard work. This is a long 10 days for them. Most have two jobs during rally week,” he said. “They also learn teamwork and about communicating with our customers. They meet people from around the country and the world.”

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