WHITE LAKE — Despite periods of rain, enthusiasm was high for the annual Mike Merritt Scholarship Ride. Evelyn Merritt, one of the event’s many organizers, proclaimed this year’s ride a resounding success.
“It was a huge turnout,” said Merritt.
Activities were held at the White Lake Fire Department without the ride, because of the weather. Merritt said it was disappointing to be unable to ride, but folks still were eager to come out enjoy a plate of barbecue, purchase an item and take part in good fellowship, said Merritt.
“Instead of the ride, we sold plates and people could purchase an auction item,” said Merritt.
She added that the ride also had many great contributors who were willing to assist in various ways to make the event a success. Merrit said that the ride raised $9,236 and there are some outstanding contributions continuing to come in.
“It’s for a good cause,” said Merritt.
The ride was originally planned to have left the White Lake Fire Department and traveled to the Beaver Dam community where participants would have enjoyed a meal and games and a live auction. Instead, with the rain hampering the ride itself, the festivities were moved to the fire department. Merritt said there was plenty of food and games for everyone’s enjoyment, despite the weather.
“I heard someone there say, and I like to repeat it, ‘Rain or shine, He still blesses,’” said Merritt of the event’s success.
The scholarship provides funds for Bladen County folks who wish attend Bladen Community College. The ride over the years has raised more than $40,000 for the scholarship fund.
In 2014, the ride raised more than $7,000. Since its inception, Merritt said that 18 students have received assistance from the endowed scholarship.
Erin Smith can be reached by calling 910-862-4163.