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More than 100 Friends for Life cycle through the County on journey to Montreal

More than 100 cyclists breezed through Prince Edward County Monday on day two of a six-day journey from Toronto to Montreal.

The 19th annual Friends for Life Bike Rally has raised approximately $803,000 for Toronto People With AIDS (PWA) Foundation – each cyclist raising a minimum of $2,500 to participate.

Day two is the longest of the rides with an 126km schedule starting at Port Hope and ending at Adophustown. After an 83 km trek, participants landed at The Henderson House in Consecon. Hosts Heather Marr and Chantal Grondin have welcome the participants for many years. The route from Consecon is now dedicated to Heather, who died in 2015.

Also supporting the riders for many years is Schroedter’s Cafe and Bakery at Huff’s Corners, just outside Picton. There riders were offered fruit and drinks and snacks before embarking on their last leg of the journey to Adolphustown.

Megs Jackman and Allison Janzen, centre, are two of about a dozen women participating in this year’s ride.

This is the ninth ride for Megs Jackman, of Toronto.

“I first started doing this because my uncle is HIV positive and I wanted to do something that would help out,” she said.

A bike mechanic by trade, Jackman brings her skills to the ride as a crew member.

“I take a week off from getting paid to fix bikes to come here and fix bikes,” she laughs. “But it’s kind of the highlight of my summer.”

Prince Edward County is one of her favourite parts of the ride.

“It is so gorgeous here. It’s flat and there’s usually a tailwind,” she said, adding the heat could have been turned down a bit for the day but the whole ride is gorgeous.

Riding with her is Allison Janzen who is in her third year as a participant.

“I know a few people who are HIV positive and have used PWA services so I just want to help them out,” she said. “I’m a avid cyclist but it’s a really great challenge. I call it my Tour de Montreal. But it’s pretty great.”

 

At the Glenora Ferry, Prince Edward Mayor Robert Quaiff and councillors Gord Fox, Jim Dunlop and Steve Ferguson greeted and spoke with the riders and crew members.

The ride has raised more than $14 million for PWA and is the agency’s sustaining fundraiser to provide meal and food programs, treatment, therapy and financial assistance. Established 30 years ago, PWA is the nation’s largest direct support service agency of its kind for people living with HIV/AIDS.

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