Motorcyclists Hit the Road to Support Muscular Dystrophy Association

Around 2,500 motorcyclists participated in the 5th Annual MDA Benefit Ride & Concert presented by Trantolo & Trantolo and TSI Harley Davidson July 14.

Participants and supporters were also treated to a concert from Bret Michaels and Grand Funk Railroad at the Sun Valley Beach Resort in Stafford Springs.

The annual event supports the Muscular Dystrophy Association, with all proceeds from the ride benefitting the MDA of Connecticut.

"It's important to give back, especially to those who are suffering and need to find a way to treat that suffering," said Keith Trantolo, Managing Partner of presenting sponsor Trantolo & Trantolo.

"It means that they can send lots of kids to camp and find a lot of research to help us," said Louis Ballestas, MDA State Ambassador.  Louis, 9, suffers from muscular dystrophy.  He said his muscles don't work the same as other kids and he gets tired easily.

Funds raised at this yearly event have helped send Louis to camp three years in a row.

"He comes home with so much more confidence and he's excited and he absolutely loves it," Melanie Ballestas, Louis' mother, said.

The annual ride and concert, which brought in more than 5,000 people in attendance this year, is the state's largest one-day charity motorcycle ride.

"It's overwhelming, it really is," said Melanie Ballestas.

NBC Connecticut's Josh Cingranelli emceed the event.

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