'Blessing of the Bikes' celebrates 20 years at Bald Knob Cross

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Reporter - Robert Bradfield
Photojournalist - Randall Barnes

ALTO PASS, Ill. — It isn't the type of rally you might associate with bikers.  "There's a whole bunch of different types of people here," said Chad Nalley.

And like the "objects in mirror are closer than they appear" message on the passenger side mirror of your vehicle, looks can be deceiving. 

"It's a time for fun, fellowship and prayer," he said. 

Nalley is part of the Christian Motorcycle Association - a nationwide fellowship group that holds events like the one in Alto Pass, Illinois year-round to bless the bikes of those who ride.

"They know how important it is for prayer - they ask for God's safety throughout the year and they are here just for that," Nalley said. 

But don't let the leather throw you said Phillip Glodo.  "There's a lot more to people than just what the general public sees, you know?  Everyone sees the bikes - hears the loud exhaust and everything but everybody here goes to church too," he said. 

Glodo and Doug Johnson are just two of more than seven thousand bikers receiving blessings.  Johnson hopped on his two wheels in Chicago and made the 6.5 hour trip.

"Although they call it a bike blessing, we tend to think of it as a biker blessing because we are there to bless their bike and ride, but we're there to really pray for the biker," he said.

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