From lawnmower races to Kiddy Karroll, Faith’s Door Family Fun Day has it all

DANIEL CLIFTON • PICAYUNE EDITOR

LLANO — When Rhonda Herridge decided to throw a fundraiser for Faith’s Door, a residential facility for women looking for a fresh start, she did it in a big way.

“I wanted to do something both to raise funds and raise awareness about what Faith’s Door is, and it turned into this,” Herridge said.

“This” is Faith’s Door Family Fun Day at the Oxford Ranch, 11380 Texas 16 about 10 miles south of Llano. The event is Oct. 4-5, but most of the activities fall on Oct. 5. Organizers are holding a chicken-fried steak dinner 6-8 p.m. Oct. 4 at the ranch. Tickets for the dinner are $8 for adults and $4 for children 12 and younger.[box]IF YOU GO
WHAT: Faith’s Door Family Fun Day
WHEN: Oct. 4-5
WHERE: Oxford Ranch, 11380 Texas 16 about 10 miles south of Llano
COST: Chicken-fried steak dinner Oct. 4 is $8 for adults and $4 for children 12 and younger; events Oct. 5 are free to watch with $5 parking fee; participation fees are required for some events
FOR MORE: Call Rhonda Herridge at (512) 809-0285[/box]

But the big day is definitely Oct. 5. For a parking fee of $5 per vehicle, attendees can enjoy activities such as lawnmower racing, a washer tournament, mud volleyball, a Kiddy Karroll, a poker run, a barbecue cook-off and lots of live music.

Some activities may require a fee to participate.

“It’s really going to be a fun day,” Herridge said. “This is the first time I’ve ever seen mud volleyball, but I heard it’s lots of fun.”

The Lone Star Mower Racing Association is sanctioning the lawnmower race. It will be the first points race of the 2013-2014 season.

“The layout is great out there,” said Dennis Drake, a racer and association member. “Some of these mowers, if you put them out on the street, can reach up to 70 miles per hour.”

On the course, however, the racers probably won’t reach those speeds but will easily hit 40-plus mph on straight-aways.

Herridge said her hope is to use the event to let people know about Faith’s Door.

“It’s basically a residential program for women who are looking for some help or a way to get  a fresh start,” she said. Faith’s Door has space for up to six women at a time. During their stay at Faith’s Door, the women learn skills that help them make it on their own, whether it’s life skills or job-related skills.

“While some women may be trying escape a bad relationship, that doesn’t need to be the only reason to come here for help,” Herridge said. “It could be people are just struggling to get from point A to point B and need a little help. This is an opportunity so they can take that next step in life.”

But Faith’s Door is not a shelter, and it’s not for the entire family. Herridge said mothers will be able to see their kids whenever they like, but the facility doesn’t have the room to allow the residents to bring their children with them. If a woman doesn’t have family or friends who can take in the children during her stay, Herridge said Faith’s Door has several area foster families who will take care of them.

After a woman’s stay at the facility, Faith’s Door staff doesn’t wash their hands of her.

“We do follow-ups with the women,” Herridge said. “We don’t just send them out on their own. We want to help them be successful.”

During the Faith’s Door Family Fun Day, people can learn about the organization’s mission while having, well, lots of fun.

The Kiddy Karroll, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Oct. 5, sets aside space for all-day children’s activities, including art, a ball pit, volleyball and a bounce house, just to name a few.

Other events Oct. 5 include:

  • LSMRA lawnmower race — 2-6 p.m.
  • mud volleyball — registration at 11 a.m.; games at noon
  • washer tournament — registration at 10 a.m; games at 11 a.m.
  • Faith’s Flames of Hope BBQ Cook-off — check in and registration Oct. 4; cooking Oct. 5
  • poker run — first bike out at 11 a.m.; last bike out at noon

“The riders should have a lot of fun on the poker run,” Herridge said. “They will be riding through some of the most beautiful area around.”

For more information on the event or Faith’s Door, call Herridge at (512) 809-0285.

daniel@thepicayune.com