fbpx

Bricks Blocks and Bags for Bikes

What started out as an innocent idea, slowly turned into something more for SPEC MIX Regional Manager, Trey Harris. During the 2018 SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500 North Texas regional series, Harris wanted to hold an auction geared towards Texas mason contractors in honor of his late friend and long-time business associate, Mike Blackburn. 

Blackburn had a passion for the Cal Farley’s Boys Ranch, and it was only natural that Harris would try to raise as much money as he could to help support that particular organization. Harris contacted industry friends and supporters, getting them to donate various construction related items in his first ever attempt at an auction. His efforts proved more than successful, raising over $30,000 for the Boy’s Ranch.

The seed was planted, and in true Trey Harris fashion, he had to go bigger and better for 2019.

To up the stakes at the 2019 SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500 North Texas event auction, Harris and the SPEC MIX sales team hustled to gather even more donations and reached out to additional willing participants. While handing over a generous donation for the Boys Ranch was something Harris would always cherish, he felt the need to try to make a bigger impact closer to home.Reaching out to local Dallas ABC affiliate, WFAA, Harris was able to get in contact with Chief Meteorologist, Pete Delkus. The two worked out a plan to donate bikes for underprivileged kids in the Dallas – Ft. Worth area through WFAA’s non-profit, Santa’s Helpers, who run a charity toy drive right before Christmas every year. The bikes would be delivered live on their 10 PM newscast.

“Santa’s Helpers was started at WFAA 50 years ago. We gather toys for 50,000 kids and distribute them for the Christmas season. Without the generosity from folks like SPEC MIX this wouldn’t be possible,”
  
– Pete Delkus

Harris named the auction “Bricks, Block and Bags for Bikes”. Local and national construction companies donated different types of material, and all proceeds would go to building as many bikes as possible.

Area mason contractors opened their hearts and checkbooks, helping to raise $50,000, enough to build 1,000 bikes, “I couldn’t believe it,” Harris said, “I started working on this about two months before the event. Our community is the best. Next year we may try to beat our record and raise $75,000 and build 1500 bikes, who knows.”

Once word got out about the success of the Bricks, Blocks and Bags for Bikes campaign, Harris was connected with Larry Sauls and Friends, another non-profit who has been supporting the Dallas community since 2001.

Larry Sauls and Friends, along with Academy Sports, helped match the 1,000 bikes donated through the SPEC MIX auction, doubling their efforts.

“20 years ago I decided to give back to the community, so I started donating bikes, sleeping bags and coats. Every year I would donate a little bit more, and we grew. We then started getting our customers involved, and now, with the help of SPEC MIX, we donated $128,000 in toys,” 
 
– Larry Sauls

With a new total of 2,000 bikes to be delivered, Sauls found a local warehouse to have all of the bikes constructed. The end result was a sea of bikes, all needing to be transported so they could be distributed evenly throughout local organizations who specialize in assisting families in need during the holidays.
Delkus was surprised at the size of the donation and remarked, “When I heard that you guys were donating 2,000 bikes, I was blown away. We’ve never had anyone do that before.”
Two by two the bikes were loaded into more than ten semi and flatbed trailers and transported to a nearby warehouse. It took a crew of 15 nearly 12 hours to complete the task. One QUIKRETE flatbed truck, loaded with 165 bikes, made its way downtown as part of the backdrop for the WFAA evening newscast, where the donation amount was revealed.

Harris would like to thank all of the sponsors who came together to make help him achieve his goal: Skinner Masonry, GG&S, Artisan Masonry, DMG Masonry, A Star Masonry, Dee Brown Inc, Ranch Masonry, Texas Building Products, Adams Supply, Southwest Scaffolding, Holcim Cement, ACME Brick, Alliance Materials, Multiquip, SPEC MIX, Sunbelt Rentals, Advanced Architectural Stone, Spec Rents, Dallas Cast Stone, United Rentals, Prosoco, Ventures Equipment, Cisco Supply, Texas Stucco Supply, Grand Prairie ISD, Hohmann and Barnard, and Gatorback Mortarboards.