Assistant Spectrum Editor
The Cutthroats, one of Richmond’s most visible bike gangs, began its third annual Christmas Bike Fundraiser with their Fall Formal dance party at Strange Matter on Thurs., Nov. 18.
“This is the first thing we’ve hosted with the (Cutthroats),” Strange Matter bartender Ron Rogers said. “It was great, I had a lot of fun. It’s fun for people but also there’s a good outcome. Instead of just throwing a dance party, they hold a dance party to benefit others. So it’s like, ‘Oh, let’s have a dance party and let’s give kids bikes.’ They’re not as scary as their name would imply.”
“We give away helmets and locks with the bikes and like to focus on giving older kids bikes because the cut-off age to receive some of these donations is 16,” said Noelle Archibald, one of the founders of the Cutthroats. “We do buy some bikes for smaller kids but we like to buy BMX bikes and other bikes for kids ages 16-19. We also (worked) with U-Locks of Love … this year and that will help us buy one to two more bikes.”
In addition to this event, the group hosts other events throughout the holiday season that are all part of their Christmas Bike Fundraiser.
“This is the first thing we’re doing this season but we’re also going to put out donation boxes in local businesses – definitely at Lamplighter and Cary Town,” Archibald said. “We’re going to host a talent competition at Gallery5, the 3rd annual Bring it RVA, on Tuesday, Dec. 14.”
The Cutthroats, who are probably best known for organizing Slaughterama and Best Friend’s Day, will be working with Hell’s Satans to host Bring it RVA and are also working on an art auction as part of their fundraiser.
The Fall Formal showcased dancers and rappers through a dance-off and rap battle, and had close to 300 attendees and raised over $200, all of which went toward the bike fund.
Crystal June Storey, a local physics teacher and a pledge for the Cutthroats, was the winner of the dance-off, but the winner of the rap battle was a little unclear because of the high-energy chaos during the battle.
“The party was a … good change of pace,” VCU senior Sebastian Gocan said. “It was nice to see that many people just cutting loose and getting down. It’s also really cool that the Cutthroats put on something that really benefits the community. They are good dudes and I honestly had a blast.”
“We like to have a good dance party a few times a year,” Archibald said.
“One of our biggest missions is to help our community. We don’t want to sit around and wish to be in a better city – we’d much rather do something to better the community in order to make that happen.”