26 October 2010
The Colorado Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society recently announced results of this year's fund-raising:
"Thank you for your dedication to and support of Bike MS and the Colorado Chapter! Due to your commitment and hard work, we have exceeded our goal of raising over $3.2 million! This is the first time the Ride has eclipsed the $3 million mark and we could not have done it without your extraordinary efforts!"
Thanks to all of our Premium Pedalers who raised between $1,000-1,999 for this year's Ride! We have 395 Premium Pedalers for the 2011 Ride and look forward to continuing to grow this new club."
I'm in that Premium Pedaler club for the second consecutive year, thanks to my generous sponsors. I also am a Mission First Club member because I donate whatever prize I win each year (ten years running now!) back to the Colorado Chapter. Well, except for the year I won a VIP parking pass for the following year's event. A parking pass costs nothing, so I kept and very happily used that!
"By donating your prize back to the Society, the funds used to purchase the prize will instead be used for national research and client programs and services," the Chapter explains. "A HUGE thanks to all of you who participated in our Mission First Club. By donating back the value of your prize certificate, you directly impact the amount of financial resources and services we can provide to our clients in need."
This year they came out with a fancy chart that shows what a donated prize provides. My prize is the equivalent of two hours of in-home care for someone afflicted with multiple sclerosis. Pretty cool!
This cycling event was called the MS-150 for the first 22 or 23 years. Then they changed it to BikeMS. I'm a creature of habit, and I still wind up saying MS-150 most of the time. It's a catchy phrase!
Now they've thrown yet another curveball. Colorado has joined with Wyoming, so it's not even called the Colorado Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society anymore. The name got longer. Yes, you guessed it! It's now the Colorado-Wyoming Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. CureMSco-wy for short. I think my aging brain is going to implode!!!
Another announcement was the location and date for next year's ride. As a member of the Premium Pedaler Club, I get to register a month before the general public. In other words, a guaranteed spot if I register right away. I've never had a problem registering for this ride because I typically register the day I get the email saying registration has opened. I have a friend, however, who qualified for the Premium Pedaler Club last year and forgot to register this year until it was too late. The ride sold out, as it always does. My friend didn't get to ride this year.
Typically I book a hotel room for the overnight stay as soon as I register. (We ride 75 miles the first day, stay overnight in the host city, then ride 75 miles back to the start the second day.) This year, everything in the host city was booked. Five months in advance!!! I couldn't believe it! I was able to scrounge a cancelled reservation a month later, thank heavens and persistent effort, but I was determined this debacle would never happen again. I set a goal to book my room the day the 2011ride is announced, even though I can't register for the ride until February.
Imagine my surprise when I discovered only four hotel rooms left for that 2011 weekend! That's 10 whole months in advance! That is one popular weekend. And yes, I do have my room for next year!
Now I just have to keep myself in shape. I don't plan to allow my body to get out of shape this winter. I was able to pedal at least 30 miles at least once a week almost all through last winter. I hope to do a little better than that this year, weather permitting.
Oh, I also have to get my bike in shape. I lost my derailleur during Ride the Rockies this year. The Lizard had planned to rebuild my bike with new and improved components, since the old components are not available anymore. In reviewing prices, it will cost nearly as much to turn my 9-speed into a 10-speed as it would cost to buy a new bike. So we're still up in the air on that right now. I have a mountain bike derailleur on my road bike, and the shifting is pretty rough. But I can and do still ride.
Takes a lot more than a wimpy shifter to keep this camera-toting freewheeler off the trails and bike paths!