Spending 30 plus days of celebrating what Barack Obama and all of us capital city queers affectionately call LGBT Pride month was a fabulous whirlwind. This year, even as my ears were solidly blocked with glitter, I had no problem hearing the roar of engines, prompting me to share a few laughs and few drinks with the folks of OUT Riders WMC. I had the chance to chat about the growing organization with their president, Tammy Kronebusch, who shares how the group has been making their mark on the LGBTQ community.
How/when was OUT Riders WMC founded?
OUT Riders DMV Women’s Motorcycle Club (WMC) was founded in January 2014. A small group of lesbian motorcycle riders and friends were looking for a motorcycle group focused on riding, community, friendship, and having a good time with other LGBTQA riders. Word of mouth spread to a few other mutual friends, and with one historic meeting at Hooters, OUT Riders WMC was born.
What are the requirements to become a member?
We are primarily geared towards women riders, but membership in OUT Riders WMC is open to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and allied riders without regard to age, race, religion, sexual orientation, or gender identity. Members must own and operate a motorcycle of 500cc or above, and have a valid motorcycle driver’s license endorsed by their state, as well as proof of insurance for their motorcycle. Basically, if you ride a motorcycle, support our goals of friendship and supporting the LGBTQA community, and are looking to have fun, we’d be happy to have you with us!
Does OUT Riders work with other organizations?
Absolutely! The membership votes annually on select charities to support for the year. When we first organized OUT Riders WMC, we knew that not only did we want to ride, but we wanted to give back to our communities and be positive examples.
What changes in the community have you seen since the foundation?
Having the Department of Defense Color Guard participate in Capital Pride this year meant a lot to several of our members, who are military veterans and served under Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. We rode ahead of the Color Guard in the parade, and standing next to them just before step-off, several members were on the verge of tears, witnessing a moment they thought they’d never see.
What would you tell someone interested in being part of OUT Riders or becoming a bike owner?
When you see two bikers pass each other, they extend a hand to greet each other because when you’re on a motorcycle, you’re a part of the biker community. And as members of the LGBTQA community, we support each other and work to make the world a better place for ourselves and those around us. Being a member of OUT Riders WMC means being a part of both of those wonderful communities. So when you see someone wearing our patch, you know that you’re among friends.