We have only 2 weeks before the Challenge to Conquer Cancer team departs from the Greenville Hospital System's Cancer Center. We will roll out at 3pm sharp! Here's a map of the GHS campus with some info on our assembly area and route.
Take Faris Road to Doctor's Drive and turn towards the Cancer center. In year's past, the parking area up and to the right has been opened for family and friends to park while sending us off. I believe that will be the case this year as well. We'd love to have a big sendoff, so please mark your calendars to attend.
Our training rides are starting to wind down. Yesterday (Sept 24) and Friday (Sept 23), Most of the teams went out and got a good ride. I joined several others for a 75 mile ride from Furman to Saluda and back. We included a number of fun climbs along the way - Packs Mt, Callahan Mt and the watershed. These are very classic climbs for this area, and we enjoyed ourselves along the route. With the beautiful fall weather we had, we saw many other riders out on the road. It was a great day of riding. I think all of the riders are physically ready for this ride.
Last night, we had a team meeting where everyone got together to talk about logistics, the route, packing lists and various other topics. The route will be similar to the route we rode in 2009, although there was some distance added in 2010, and some other small modifications for 2011. I'll try to find a link to our route and send it out when I do.
Another big highlight of last night was the distribution of the team jerseys. Every year the jerseys have a similar look to maintain some continuity, although each year there are small changes to make the jerseys uniquely identifiable for the year. This year, we have a Texas flag on the back, and a SC flag on the front. Also, to memorialize a very good friend who passed away in 2010, we have a small polka dot on the collar with his initials. It is a good looking jersey and I'll be proud to wear it to Texas this year. In the link below, I've included several photos of the jersey.
A task that I've performed for the last couple of weekends is preparing the magnets for your loved ones. A few of the local folks have taken magnets home with them to personalize. PLEASE get these magnets back to me before our departure. I've included photos of the magnets (along with the jersey) in the link below:
If you have asked me for a magnet and do not see your loved one's name in the photo(s), PLEASE contact me so I can make sure I honor or memorialize your loved one. I try to keep things organized, but I'm human, and mistakes are possible. Please contact me If I have missed a name.
Fundraising; I've nearly reached my goal. Thanks to the awesome generosity of my family, friends and co-workers I am only about $150 short of my goal. There is still time to make a donation, and I encourage you to make the donation you may have intended, regardless of how much I have remaining to meet my goal. Remember, your donations go towards cancer research and survivorship programs on both a local Upstate South Carolina (Greenville Hospital System and Anderson Cancer Center) as well as a national (The Lance Armstrong Foundation and Amgen's Breakaway from Cancer) level. Meeting my goal simply ensures me a spot on the ride to Austin. Your donations mean a whole lot more to the many folks who benefit from these programs. So, please take a moment and make that donation you would like to make - remember, even a $5 donation helps.
Donate through this link: http://goo.gl/5fwwV Thank you!
Blogs: Folks have started blogging on the www.ridetoaustin.com blog. You'll start to see more and more as we get closer, and once the ride starts, there will be a big increase in participation. Please follow us through the blog. You'll also see a 'Where are they now' link to the upper right - this is a 'SPOT' tracker that we'll carry along in the bus. That tracker will be active when we depart, and will stay active throughout the ride to Austin. It will stay with the team that is riding throughout the trip.
I'll also post to my personal blog all of the entries I make along the way. You can follow me at http://windinmyhairbugsinmyteeth.blogspot.com/
Again, thank you very much for your generosity, it means a great deal to a lot of people, especially to me.
3 years ago