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19th Annual Blessing of the Bikes at Cook’s Corner in Trabuco Canyon

Father James from St. Michael’s Abbey in Silverado Canyon provided the anointing and blessings.

 

By Tammye McDuff

Cook’s Corner Bar, best known as the location for Southern California’s most infamous biker bar, held their 19thAnnual Blessing of the Bikes May 5th, Cinco de Mayo Sunday.  Father James from St. Michael’s Abbey provided the anointing and blessings, beginning at 7:00 am.

The Blessing of the Bikes is an annual tradition where riders of motorcycles or bicycles are blessed by a priest in the hope that it will bring safety for the coming season. Many towns hold annual ceremonies to bless motorcycles at the start of the summer.

The first mass blessing of bicycles was held in 1999 at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in New York City. Since its beginning the ceremony has been ostensibly non-denominational, focusing more on rider safety than religion. However, the service does include prayers and reading of biblical passages, and bicycles are sprinkled with holy water. A brief memorial service is held to acknowledge riders who have died in the previous year.

“It is an odd combination of bikes, beer and God,” said James “some riders wear crucifixes and are very reverent, others rev up their engine. Some are the salt of the earth, and others need a little more salt. But it’s been a good experience.”

Good ole rock-n-roll began blasting at 10:30 a.m. and featured The Rusty Dog Band, The Road Show Rebels and Mr. Crowley. Raffle prizes included a 50/50 raffle, gift cards from accessory shops, helmets, tee shirts and tacos.

 

 

Bikers parked waiting for the blessing.

 

This year’s proceeds will help out one of their own, Marty Chenier who was in a motorcycle accident February 2018 with his fiancée Kristie when a car pulled out in front of them. They were both severely injured and are both still wheel chair bound.  Monies were raised to purchase a Powermatic Therapy Table. Chenier is still unable to walk on his own and receives therapy twice a week. With this table, he will be able to add more at-home therapy.

The popularity of the service has encouraged other localities to follow suit. Annual blessings are held from Massachusetts to Los Angeles to Melbourne, Australia. The annual blessing at Cook’s typically brings in about 2,500 bikers. It’s normal for members of a dozen or more motorcycle clubs to show up in their cuts at Cook’s during the event. This year the list included the Valkyries, Hessians, Boozefighters, Viet Nam Vets/Legacy Vets, Capistrano Eagles, Dynasty, Devil’s Rejects, Lords of Chaos, Mongols, American Legion Riders, Nantes (France), Elite Bikers, 10 West Bikerz, Templar Militia Templi, Vagos, Ceristeros Choppers, Cochinos, Baby James MC, and Soldiers For Jesus.

Cook’s Corner is located at the corner of East Santiago and Live Oak Canyon Roads in Trabuco Canyon.

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This is a very educational read, allows the people of the greater Dairy Valley, So. Cal, to see jewels hidden up in Orange Hills. Thank you for publishing. This area is not only home to the motorcycles, there are some RV campsites up there, lake for fishing, mls of hiking trails, plus a lot of people take their 4×4 to go mud climbing with their off road trucks, plus a lot of naturalist enjoyed Madame Modjeska Canyon and historical Museum. Since this area is somewhat isolated, during the summer months, it’s Not Unusual to see women on their motorcycles topless.… Read more »