Come and enjoy a great July day on a bicycle and help celebrate the recovery of many from mental illness.
That’s the purpose behind a recreational bicycle touring event called “Fight Stigma and Ride,” coming to the Ketchum and Sun Valley area for the first time on Sunday, July 7.
Raising awareness of mental illness and creating compassionate, supportive communities for millions of Americans affected by mental illness are goals of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, or NAMI.
The first annual NAMI Bikes Sun Valley event is the first of four NAMI “Fight Stigma & Ride” benefit rides being held nationwide in 2013, with a goal of raising $120,000.
NAMI is the largest grassroots mental health organization in the country.
Carla Young, executive administrator for NAMI Wood River Valley Inc., said the July 7 event starting and finishing in the River Run parking lot will include two offerings.
The first is a 50-mile supported, non-competitive ride on public roadways and bike paths. The second is a 10-mile family ride along the bike path.
Rain or shine, both rides kick off with rider check-in and registration at 8 a.m. Sunday, July 7 in the upper, larger River Run parking lot. There is no advance registration deadline. At that time, a continental breakfast will be offered to participants and volunteers in the parking lot area.
The 50-mile ride will begin at 9 a.m. and the 10-mile ride at 10 a.m. Volunteers should check-in at 7 a.m. at the start.
Local bikers will be familiar with the routes. The 50-mile ride begins on the bike path headed to north Ketchum, over Saddle Rd. to Sun Valley Rd., out Trail Creek to the end of the asphalt, back to Sun Valley and over Elkhorn Hill to S.H. 75, down the bike path to Triumph and through Greenhorn Gulch, and back along the bike path to River Run.
There is about 1,000 feet of elevation gain for the 50-miler. Entry fee is $50 per rider. The fee is waived if the rider collects $250 in fundraising.
The 10-mile family ride goes along the bike path to East Fork and back to River Run. Cost is $10 for each family member rider. The fee is waived if a rider collects $100 in fundraising.
Each participating rider receives a short-sleeved t-shirt and a water bottle. For fundraising $150, you also receive a long sleeve “Fight Stigma and Ride” t-shirt. For raising $250, the rider earns complimentary entry fee and a cycling jersey with the race logo.
One-half of the net funds collected by riders and volunteers will be used to fund NAMI’s programs in the Wood River Valley.
Registration of riders and volunteers along with team building and fundraising is taking place online at www.fightstigmaandride.org, and by clicking on NAMI Bikes Wood River Valley.
For more information and sponsorship details, contact sponsorship chair Miller Wray at 622-3629 or 720-2460, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or call Carla Young at 309-1987 or email her at nami