RIDING TOWARDS AWARENESS — A group of 22 bicyclists rode through Conrad last Wednesday during their 70-day trek across the continent. They are raising money and awareness in cancer research. I-O Photo by Deanna Wakkinen
By Deanna Wakkinen, I-O Reporter
On Wednesday, a group of 22 students from the University of Texas in Austin rode their bicycles through our area and spent the night in the Conrad High School wrestling room.
These students are part of a bigger group of 45 that are participating in the Texas 4000. The students ride together on their first day of travel and on the last 10 days before reaching Anchorage, Alaska.
Adam Laurenzo, a rider from the group, tells the I-O that the group’s goal is “spreading hope, knowledge and charity.”
These individuals have spent a year and a half preparing for this voyage that will take 70 days to complete. In their preparations they were asked to raise $1 per mile per person for a total of $4,500 per person. They then continue to raise money during the course of their travel and by the time they reached Conrad, they had raised over $200,000. Their team goal is $351,000.
The money raised will be used to support cancer research. One of the leaders in cancer research is the MD-Anderson Cancer Center in Texas.
The group travels between 70-120 miles per day which equals about 6-12 hours of travel time. In Montana they had already stopped in Yellowstone, Bozeman, Helena and Great Falls. They were greatly anticipating reaching Whitefish. When asked how they were liking their Montana accommodations and travel, Laurenzo commented, “we like the weather. It’s nice to have 80 degrees in summer.”
The Conrad Area Chamber of Commerce provided dinner to the riders at the Legion Park and the High School provided showers and breakfast before the riders continued on their way.