Teams needed for Heart and Stroke’s Big Bike

Five team slots are still available for the Big Bike event June 11 in Ladysmith.

There are still plenty of seats to fill on the biggest bike ride in town.

On June 11, the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s Big Bike will roll into Ladysmith, and there are five team time slots left, says Ladysmith event co-ordinator PJ Halliday.

“We’re always looking for teams,” she said. “Even some of the existing teams might need a few riders. We like to have full bikes so it makes it easier for everybody to pedal … the bike weighs 3,000 pounds.”

The bike holds 30 riders, but teams can form up to 29 people, Halliday explained. At press time, there were five teams registered, and they include TOL-LOL [Town of Ladysmith], Curvalicious [Curves] and the Outrageous Cruisers [Ladysmith Downtown Business Association]. The five slots available are primarily in the afternoon and evening.

The Big Bike event has been wheeling around Ladysmith for the last decade, with funds being donated to cardiovascular research. Last year’s event raised more than $10,000.

“It is a lot of fun; there’s a little bit of team spirit and team building that goes on, especially when you have a group from your work or a team you play on,” Halliday said. “It’s all for a good cause, and some people come together because of that.”

She added that cardiovascular disease and stroke are issues close to many people’s hearts.

“Sometimes it hits home for a lot of people and that’s why they jump on the bike,” Halliday said. “It could be themselves who are a heart or stroke event survivor, or it could be family history.”

The Big Bike ride lasts approximately 15 to 20 minutes and weaves a gentle path along the flat of First Avenue and the roundabout. The 49th Parallel Grocery store will also be allowing the use of its back parking lot for the event.

Participants must be older than 14 years old to ride the bike, and all are asked to raise a $50 minimum for the cause. Halliday said the Heart and Stroke Foundation provides a website which can make fundraising easier. To find out more or get involved, call 250-245-2477 or e-mail phalliday@ladysmith.ca.