Charity cyclists make rest stop at Geneva College


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Bicycle-friendly faculty and staff at Geneva College welcomed 15 long-distance pedal-pushers to an overnight rest stop at the Beaver Falls campus on Monday.

The cyclists are riding from Minnesota to New Jersey to raise money and awareness for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

They're riding for the Jett Foundation, a national nonprofit committed to finding a cure for the progressive neuromuscular disorder that is the most common lethal disorder diagnosed during childhood.

Many of the JetRide participants have a sibling who has been diagnosed with the disease.

Each rider has raised at least $4,000 to fund research and the 1,500-mile bicycle ride they are making through eight states and 15 cities.

They'll be on the road for four weeks.

The riders arrived at about 4 p.m. Monday, and the faculty prepared a barbecue for them, said Michael J. Loomis, dean of students at Geneva College. The travelers stayed overnight in college dorm rooms.

"We're pleased to be able to support such a worthy cause," said Mr. Loomis, a longtime avid bicyclist who regularly rides for long distances. Geneva became part of the tour when the bicycling community reached out to help the JetRide participants find rest stops at colleges, churches and private homes.

Mr. Loomis and many in the Geneva community are interested in long-distance rides, and are planning one of their own.

In May Mr. Loomis will lead Geneva Across America -- a 10-week, 3,816-mile bicycle ride from San Francisco to Yorktown, Va.

The goal is to raise $25,000 to establish an endowed scholarship for needy students.

The cost to ride is $3,500, and the ride is open to students, faculty, staff, alumni and anyone who is a "friend of the college," Mr. Loomis said.

There's also the option to be a "tag-along rider" for part of the trip, at a cost of $75-85 per day.

Go to www.geneva.edu/object/gaa for further information.

neigh_west

Linda Wilson Fuoco: lfuoco@post-gazette.com or 412-722-0087.


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