Russian President Vladimir Putin has awarded a nationalist motorcycle club about 9 million rubles ($128,000) to put on children’s shows, the Kommersant newspaper reported Thursday.
The Night Wolves biker club was given the presidential grants to organize the New Year’s show at their club, according to the newspaper. It will “explain the historical and spiritual heritage of Russia and Russia's challenges in a clear, fairytale manner for children,” the Night Wolves' grant application said. The show is already sold out.
The Night Wolves was founded in Moscow in 1989 and hosts motorcycle festivals and rock band performances in the country, according to Putin’s office. The gang made headlines in May when they rode their bikes from Moscow to Berlin to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany in World War II.
The group’s leader Alexander Zaldostanov is Putin’s old friend.