US – Buckeye Breakaway raises funds for MS

On August 1, 2015 a group of RRT volunteers from Cleveland, Ohio assisted the National Multiple Sclerosis Society – Ohio Buckeye Chapter held their annual MS “Buckeye Breakaway” Bike Ride Event. This event is an opportunity for riders of all ages, levels and abilities to help raise money for research to end the devastating effects of Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

Almost 2000 riders arrived to take part in the Bike MS event

Almost 2000 riders arrived to take part in the Bike MS event

Since Bike MS was founded over 30 years ago, cyclists, donors and sponsors have raised over $1 billion dollars to fund MS research and critical programs for people affected by MS. Multiple Sclerosis is a chronic and unpredictable disease of the central nervous system, which effects the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves. MS can cause many symptoms, including paralysis, blurred vision or blindness, loss of balance and poor coordination, slurred speech, extreme fatigue, problems with memory and concentration and many more. It is most common for people between the ages of 20 and 50 to be diagnosed, although individuals as young as 2 and as old as 75 have developed the disease. There are more than 2.3 million people affected by MS worldwide and Bike MS is one of the many fundraisers working together for a world free of multiple sclerosis.

One of the four rest stops offering refreshments to the cyclists

One of the four rest stops offering refreshments to the cyclists

Approximately 1900 dedicated riders showed up to show their commitment in the race for a cure, which was 200 more riders than was expected that day. Depending on whether the riders chose the 30, 75, 100 or 150 mile route, the ride took them through the rolling hills of Ashland and Lorain County. The ride for the 30 mile riders took them to the Lorain County Joint Vocational School in Oberlin, Ohio. For the 75, 100, and 150 mile riders, they ended their first day at Ashland University, where they had the choice to take part in some of the festivities before catching a bus back to Brunswick or spend the night and bike back the following day.

Cyclists enjoying the opportunity for a quick rest in the shade

Cyclists enjoying the opportunity for a quick rest in the shade

The ride kicked off the first day at around 7:00 am with much cheering and clapping, wishing the riders the best of luck. The early start allowed each rider to enjoy some cooler weather, as well as allowed them a full 10 hours to finish the journey.

Refreshments and beverages available at one of the rest stops along the bike route

Refreshments and beverages available at one of the rest stops along the bike route

The RRT Volunteers were asked to assist with manning the four rest stations along the routes by providing snacks, drinks and encouragement to the riders. Interestingly, pickles and pickle juice were found to be very popular items at these rest stops. Some riders took full bottles of pickle juice as well as water and Gatorade along with them on the ride.

Another rest stop where cyclists get a chance to enjoy more shade

Another rest stop where cyclists get a chance to enjoy more shade

Overall, it was a truly fantastic day and RRT looks forward to assisting at this event again next year!

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