Ride for the Cure eases path to participation
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO, Colorado
ASPEN – Looking to boost participation in the Aspen/Snowmass Ride for the Cure, organizers are planning new routes and incentives next summer, and – most notably – dropping the price of admission.
The event, hosted by the Aspen Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, will reduce the fundraising threshold for participants from $500 to $100, according to Logan Hood, executive director of the local affiliate.
“We heard that across the board – people wanted to ride, but they didn’t want to hit up their friends and family every year for $500,” she said.
Next year’s ride will take place Saturday, Aug. 18, allowing the pro female cyclists who will return to Aspen for events leading up to the USA Pro Cycling Challenge to participate. This year, the Ride for the Cure took place on a Sunday; with the first race for the pro women scheduled the following day, they couldn’t participate, Hood explained. With Sunday as a rest day next year, Hood is hoping to involve the women who will compete in the days leading up to the Pro Challenge’s arrival in Aspen on Aug. 22.
The planned changes to the Ride for the Cure, though, really are geared for everyone.
A family fun ride will be organized, as well as a 100-kilometer ride (about 62 miles) for those who’d like to do a “century ride” without pedaling a 100-mile route.
“A 100-mile ride is just so taxing,” Hood said. “We found that’s something people had an issue with.”
In the past, the event has offered shorter rides – a 10-mile route in the Old Snowmass area, for example – but participants were still expected to raise $500. Not anymore. Shorter rides will still be offered; the fundraising demand will ease for all riders.
Those who raise $250, though, will be rewarded with a bike jersey. And Hood is working to line up 25 percent discounts at area bike shops for participants who register for the event by June 25. The start and end point for the ride next year will be Wagner Park – a more visible spot than Aspen’s Koch Park, which has been used in recent years.
“We really want to keep this going. We want people to participate,” Hood said.
The local affiliate has raised some $3.3 million since 2004. In the ride’s biggest year, nearly 500 cyclists participated, bringing in $713,000, according to Hood. Last year, the event drew about 300 riders.
Seventy-five percent of the proceeds from Komen fundraising events stay in Pitkin, Eagle and Garfield counties for breast cancer prevention efforts and other Komen programs. Nationally, the organization funds breast cancer research.
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