SOURCE: National MS Society, Greater Delaware Valley Chapter

Bike MS: City to Shore Ride 2010

September 14, 2010 10:17 ET

Bike MS: City to Shore Ride Celebrates 30 Years

7,000 Cyclists Will Take Part in East Coast's Premier Ride

PHILADELPHIA, PA--(Marketwire - September 14, 2010) - When 70 cyclists gathered to ride their bikes from Philadelphia to Ocean City in 1980, they had no idea they were setting in motion a phenomenon that would become the top cycling event in the Greater Delaware Valley.

The ride, which raised $28,000 for multiple sclerosis research in that first year, has grown 100-fold in the past three decades. In 2010, City to Shore is poised to reach $50 million in total fundraising as 7,000 cyclists from the region and around the world take to the roads to create a world free of MS on September 25 & 26.

More than 100,000 cyclists before them have undertaken the trek, starting initially at Chamounix Mansion and more recently at PATCO's Woodcrest Station, and finishing at the Ocean City Boardwalk.

The ride's amenities have grown, as well, longtime cyclists recall.

"In the early years, there was a lunch stop with peanut butter and jelly, bread and a couple of knives," said Mike Bobal, a 30-year veteran who meets an old Navy buddy at the ride each year. "Now there's an entourage that follows you everywhere."

Ed Sigda didn't know anyone with MS when he started riding 30 years ago at age 15. Even so, he quickly became devoted to the ride and the National MS Society's mission, even missing his brother's wedding for City to Shore.

"It's a time for reflection," he said. "I have a healthy family, so I'm doing this for the people who don't."

The vital funds raised by this ride are more important than ever, as the personal and economic costs of MS grow for 13,000 local people living with MS, and researchers come ever closer to finding the cause and cure for this unpredictable neurological disease.

City to Shore attracts corporate teams, families and friends of people with MS and individuals to join the anti-MS movement. Each cyclist must collect at least $300 in pledges to participate in the tour, with many raising hundreds or thousands of dollars more. In return, cyclists receive amenities such as bike mechanics, emergency transportation, catered rest stops every 15 miles, luggage delivery and much more.

Cyclists can choose from five different routes, from a one-day, 25-mile ride to a two-day, 175-mile ride. All of the cyclists will ride together to an exciting and emotional finish at the Ocean City Civic Center. Following an overnight stay, the two-day cyclists will return to Woodcrest Station in Cherry Hill on Sunday, September 26 for a festive finish line celebration. For more information on the route or to get involved as a cyclist or volunteer, visit MScycling.org.

Many thanks to the sponsors who make City to Shore possible: Aetna, Berkadia Commercial Mortgage, Campbell's, Deer Park, Del Monte, Dole, Hatfield, Janney Montgomery Scott, Lockheed Martin, NFI, 94WYSP, NovaCare, Ocean City, PATCO, Penn Maid, Penske, Pepperidge Farm, reGen, sanofi-aventis, Shriver's, Stonyfield Organic, Subaru, Sunkist, Turkey Hill, Utz, V8 Splash, VCI Mobility and Wegmans.

About the National Multiple Sclerosis Society

MS stops people from moving. The National MS Society exists to make sure it doesn't. We do this through our home office and 50-state network of chapters by funding more MS research, providing more services to people with MS, offering more professional education and furthering more advocacy efforts than any other MS organization in the world. Join the movement at nationalMSsociety.org or by calling 1-800-FIGHT-MS.

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