Shelter Century Fall Foliage Tour – 2013
We’re one week and one day out from the 2nd annual Shelter Century Fall Foliage Tour – a cycling fundraising event for the Talbot Interfaith (homeless) Shelter. Here’s why I’m excited:
– last year, we created an awesome event. With 222 riders, 80 volunteers and dozens of local residents and businesses as sponsors, we raised almost $12,000 for the 5-year-old organization. A “homeless” homeless shelter, the group rotates cots, blankets, hot meals, love and support through dozens of faith communities during the winter months, offering a safe haven to some of the men, women and children who are our most vulnerable neighbors. But it’s not enough. The phone continues to ring all year-long, not just during the winter months, and although the Neighborhood Service Center operates a year round shelter in Easton, it can only serve 3 men and 3 women at a time. The Talbot Interfaith Shelter is the only group able to help families in our county. And we need a permanent, full-time facility to be able to offer shelter as well as transitional housing supports to help families get back on their feet, and access and sustain their own independent housing in our community. This event gives us unrestricted dollars to do exactly that – so when a family comes to us in crisis, we have cash on hand to put them up in an apartment, and send in staff and partner with other social service agencies to help them. The best news is that we are working on such a plan for a permanent facility right now.
– last year, our event was so well organized, our routes so well marked, our volunteers so darn happy that when cyclists would show up at our beautiful waterfront rest stops, people cheered and the food and drinks came out. PB&J, bagels, fruit, granola, you name it. We had bikes with balloons and swag decorating the sites, and Shalagh Hogan made everything look so cool. People emailed, facebooked and called us to thank us for such a fantastic event. They expressed surprise that it was a first year event. Yup, we did that. (Thanks to Mark Williams.)
-THIS year, a week and a day out, we already have 310 riders signed up, and have even more in sponsorship support. The ten day forecast calls for sunny skies and a high of 67, with 0% chance of rain and a light breeze. Perfect. We’re expecting 500+ riders by the 19th of October. (gulp.)
– THIS year, we have rider bags with goodies, a program and a very active social media presence (thanks, Keri-Ann Southworth.) We have some special plans happening at rest stops, and even a cool secret (can’t tell!)
-THIS year, we have even more volunteers organized to bake homemade pies (one of our event signatures), and set to rally round and make this one of the most fun rides anywhere on the planet.
-THIS year, we have five major sponsors – thanks to Wells Fargo Advisors, RBC Wealth Management, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, Cross Court Athletic Club and the Mid-Shore Board of REALTORS (thanks, Kathy Hanna, Don Sedlack, Tom Hollingshead and sponsorship team.)
– And of course, the other signature of our event – free beer and crab balls for riders on the 31 mile and 62.5 mile rides. Free beer and crab balls????? YES – thanks Eastern Shore Brewing, National Premium Beer and St, Michaels Crab and Steak House. I’ll never forget the look on the Crab and Steak’s Eric Rosen yesterday, when we told him we might be bringing 500 riders to his restaurant on the town harbor. “WHAT?” Yup, we might.
And as we scramble to finish all the ten zillion details in the next week, here’s one thought we’re keeping at the forefront of our efforts:
Talbot County Schools reported 98 kids that were technically listed as “homeless” last year – 98. That’s not to say these kids were sleeping on the street, but they don’t have secure housing. Moving from place to place, staying with family and friends…..that’s just wrong. We’re a county of some 37,000 people. 98 homeless kids in our county is NOT ok with us. That’s what this is all about.
Won’t you join us in riding or sponsoring this event? Every cent counts. You can do it by clicking right here.
Go, team (Nancy Lukoskie, TIS board, Jean Saballus, John Clizbe, commcomm)! More on this later, you can be sure (and a big thumbs up to Steve Bradley for creating and donating the artwork below.)