32nd annual Southern Maine ride starts & finishes at University of New England, Biddeford
BIDDEFORD, Maine — The 32nd Annual Bike MS: Great Maine Getaway takes place August 13 & 14, 2016, starting and finishing at the University of New England (UNE) in Biddeford. Organized by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, with support from Premier National Sponsors Primal and Bicycling magazine, the ride is a fundraising event to support MS (multiple sclerosis) research and to help people with MS in Maine live their best lives. More than 3,000 Maine residents live with MS, an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body.
“I was diagnosed with MS in 2010 and my sister was diagnosed in 2008,” said Donna McGrew of Cape Elizabeth. “My motto is, ‘Keep looking up! If you look down, that is where you are headed.’ I strongly feel that God gave me a gift of choice when I was diagnosed. It was an easy decision...I got busy!” McGrew is a VIP (Very Important Pedaler), which means she is a top fundraiser. McGrew is also captain of “The Cycling Friends” team, which among the top five fundraising teams in 2015.
Among the highlights of the weekend are a lobster bake Sunday at the conclusion of the ride and the second annual “Brewers Cup Challenge,” featuring local craft beer breweries. Each brewery is fielding a team of riders and competing for the most funds raised and largest team. Competing breweries are Gritty McDuff’s, Sebago Brewing, and Shipyard Brewing Company.
Located near the outlet of the Sacco River, the UNE campus offers great riding routes featuring priceless views of the Atlantic Ocean. The Great Maine Getaway offers a choice for riders of all experience levels, including 25-, 50-, and 75-mile routes, plus a 100-mile Century ride Saturday. During the two-days, riders from Maine and across New England will experience the beauty of Maine’s southern coastline, including an up close look at “Walkers Point,” the summer home of President George H.W. Bush.
To participate in the Great Maine Getaway, each rider agrees to raise a minimum of $250 to help people with MS in Maine and to fund cutting-edge research to stop disease progression, restore lost function, and end MS forever. Riders and volunteers can register online at www.bikeMSmaine.org. Donations for riders and teams are also accepted online by clicking ‘Donate/ePledge’ and entering the rider’s name. For more information, contact Sue Tidd at bikeMSgne@nmss.org or 1-800-526-8890.
Local supporting sponsors of the 2016 Bike MS: Great Maine Getaway include: University of New England, Maine Shellfish, WCSH-6, Poland Spring, Dirigo Brewing Company, Funky Bow Brewery and Beer Company, Gritty McDuff’s, Sebago Brewing, Shipyard Brewing Co., Rising Tide, and Tributary Brewing Company. Bike shop partners are: Allspeed, Back Bay Bicycle, CycleMania, Ernie’s Cycle Shop, Kennebunkport Bicycle Company, Quinn’s Bike & Fitness, and Rodgers Ski & Sport.
Like Bike MS: Great Maine Getaway on Facebook to see photos, get to know riders and teams, and take a virtual tour of the UNE campus and ride layout. www.facebook.com/BikeMSGreatMaineGetaway