More than 500 riders pedal for legal aid

Riders pass over the Maury Meyers Bridge during the Spindletop Spin fundraiser for the Jefferson County Pro Bono Program on June 5.

When riders gathered between the arches on Crockett Street for the start of the Spindletop Spin last Saturday, bicycles were packed wheel to wheel along the brick-paved street. "It was an incredible sight," said Cindy Torrans, coordinator and fundraiser for the Jefferson County Bar Association Foundation Pro Bono Program. In spite of bad weather on Friday night, almost 600 riders turned out for the fifth annual fundraiser. "It was our biggest ride yet," Torrans said. "It has grown every year. The first year we were happy with 100 to 150 riders. This year was had 588." Almost 700 pre-registered, but Torrans said a chance of rain kept some away. The 2010 event was bigger and better in every way, she said. "We had brand new rides, it was a completely new adventure," Torrans said. A family ride covered 16 miles, with other riders opting for the 30 or 52 mile routes. The most experienced riders tackled a new 100 mile route. Lunch on Crockett Street was provided from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event benefits the Jefferson County Bar Association Pro Bono Foundation, which provides free or low-cost legal services to indigent and low-income residents. Local attorneys donate their time to the program, but the service still incurs costs for reviewing applications, verifying eligibility, assigning cases, completing reports required by various federal and state agencies, service fees and other expenses. In previous years the Spindletop Spin raised more than $30,000. Totals for the 2010 event are not yet avaiable. The event does more than raise money for the JCBA Pro Bono Program, it is also a time to remember a local judge whose impact on families is still felt in Jefferson County. The Spindletop Spin is in memory of Judge Tom Mulvaney, who died in 2005. Mulvaney served as a family court judge in Jefferson County from 1999 to 2005, and served on the board of the Pro Bono Program for many years. One of Mulvaney's greatest joys was serving as the presiding judge for the National Adoption Day ceremonies that are held annually. Many sponsors made the 2010 Spindletop Spin possible, including Crockett Street, Beaumont Convention and Visitor's Bureau, Spindletop Steakhouse, Mehaffy Weber Attorneys, Orgain Bell & Tucker LLP, Strong Pipkin Bissell & Ledyard LLP, Germer & Gertz, Walden Reynard PLLC, Raw Revolution, Market Basket, GU and Rhodes Design. Also Total, Road ID, Becker Printing, Benckenstein & Oxford LLP, Jesse Branick, Calvert Eaves Clarke & Stelly LLP, Pat Chamblin, Ed Hughes Enterprises, Jonathan Juhon PC, Monk Law Firm, Nell McCallum & Associates Inc., Tracy Richardson, Anna & Paul Scheurich and Stratos Legal. In addition, the Beaumont Police Department, Jefferson County, area Amateur Radio Clubs and the Jefferson County Young Lawyers Association also provided services to the event. The next Spindletop Spin is scheduled for June 4, 2011. For more information on the JCBA Pro Bono Program, visit 1001 Pearl St., Room 202, Jefferson County Courthouse, Beaumont, or call 409-839-2332.

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