MUSCATINE, Iowa–For about 15 years, Pastor Jim Olsen of Community Fellowship Church in Blue Grass held an annual blessing of the bikes. When he eventually retired, the Pearl City Disciples, a group which works to share the Christian faith with bikers throughout the region and who had participated in the blessing for some time, began searching for a new place to host their event. They found one at First Baptist Church in Muscatine. In 2020, the organization opted to take a year off because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Now the Pearl City Disciples forward to bringing it back to First Baptist for a third time and making it even bigger than in previous years.
The blessing of the bikes will take place May 2 at 9 a.m. at First Baptist Church, located at 3003 Mulberry Avenue, Muscatine. A free community event, anyone may come out and enjoy music and food beginning at 9:30 a.m., a half hour message delivered around 10:30 a.m. by Olsen making a guest appearance, and the official blessing of the bikes at 11 a.m.
The event will also feature a motorcycle giveaway, where one lucky attendee will win a custom rat bike graciously donated to the event. “The bike giveaway isn’t a raffle,” emphasized Pearl City Disciples President Craig Carey. “All you have to do is sign up before the message, and we’ll pull a name out of a hat and announce the winner.”
Each year, Carey looks forward to the blessing of the bikes both as a way for the Pearl City Disciples to talk about their faith with others and to provide an enjoyable opportunity for area bikers to come together. “The main thing about this event is telling people about Christ,” he said. He added: “It’s good to see the biker community and the non-biker community come together. You’ll see like-minded people from all over the region, hear a great message from Jim Olsen, and possibly win a bike.”
With the weather warming up by the day and more bikers hitting the road to enjoy it, Carey would like to see a good turnout at this year’s blessing of the bikes to start the season out right. Whether the food, fellowship, or faith draws people in, he looks to provide everyone with a positive experience they will carry with them throughout the year. “All you have to do is come out,” he encouraged. “It’s all free.”