The third annual Rotary Ride will begin in Spruce Grove on August 20

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The Rotary Ride for You Can Ride 2 returns to Spruce Grove for the third consecutive year on Saturday, August 20.

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Hosted by the Rotary Club of Spruce Grove, the Rotary Centennial Park Charity Motorcycle Ride in Spruce Grove to the Goodwill Impact Center in Edmonton will raise funds to support the You Can Ride 2 program and mission.

You Can Ride 2 is a program that provides children with special needs with highly customized bikes best suited to their conditions and abilities to help them reach their full potential. Children in the program have a variety of diagnoses, including Down syndrome, spina bifida, cerebral palsy and autism.

“It’s always been one of those really cool startups that the Rotary Club likes to support and fund the needs of the community. It’s been a really good relationship,” said event organizer Rick Lystang.

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Customizable bikes allow children involved in the program to experience the freedom, joy and confidence of riding with friends and family. Even children who cannot walk can learn to ride a bike (or handbike) specially adapted for them.

Since 2014, the Rotary Club has been a strong supporter of You Can Ride 2. In 2015, the Rotary Club awarded the program over $80,000, helping it secure permanent space for installation and storage of bicycles at the Goodwill Impact Center in Edmonton. Children throughout the Greater Edmonton area benefit from this program each year, including several from Spruce Grove, Stony Plain and Parkland County. To date, Rotary Ride has raised over $12,000 for You Can Ride 2.

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This year, approximately 50 cyclists will make five stops, including Rotary Centennial Park, along a new 300-kilometre scenic route through Leduc, Brazeau and Parkland counties. Sponsored by local businesses in each county, stops include the Thorsby Family Restaurant in Thorsby, the White Bull Cafe in Drayton Valley, the RV Pub and Grill in Seba Beach and finally, the Goodwill Impact Center in Edmonton where a celebratory BBQ will take place. venue. . Children participating in the You Can Ride 2 program will be at each stop cheering on the riders.

“As an avid driver, I wanted to change the course to make it different for drivers who come back year after year. We also wanted to provide opportunities for new sponsors,” Lystang said.

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Along the way, runners will draw five cards (one at each stop) to make up a poker hand, with the best hand winning the grand prize of $500. Riders are encouraged to bring family and friends as passengers who can also purchase a hand to enter the raffle. A $100 entry fee to this charity poker race qualifies riders for an $80 tax receipt and a chance to win cash and prizes.

The ride will begin at Rotary Centennial Park in Spruce Grove at 9am when/where last year’s donations will be presented in the form of a check to a You Can Ride 2 representative. The convoy will depart Spruce Grove for Thorsby via Devon at 10 a.m.

To register in advance, go to sprucegroverotary.org or register in person at Spruce Grove on Saturday.

“I think we had a really good day. The riders have a very good one-on-one experience with the kids at each stop to see where the money goes. I think the biggest motivator that brings people back year after year is the quality time they can spend with great kids for a good cause,” Lystang said.

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Wiley C. Thompson