SOURCE: Great River Energy Bicycle Festival

March 15, 2006 13:38 ET

Great River Energy Renews Sponsorship of Bicycle Events

Events Proceeds Benefit Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS, MN -- (MARKET WIRE) -- March 15, 2006 --Officials at Great River Energy have announced that they will continue their sponsorship of the Great River Energy Bicycle Festival, an event that includes the Nature Valley Grand Prix professional races, through 2008. This sponsorship, which began in 2000, is one of the longest running title sponsorships currently active in professional bicycle racing.

"The Great River Energy Bicycle Festival is an excellent fit with our corporate goals," said Great River Energy CEO David Saggau. "This is one of the very few national events that has been created by volunteers from the community. The Festival also raises money for an important statewide charity, Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota. As a cooperative, supporting the community is at an integral part of our business."

The Great River Energy Bicycle Festival is a five day celebration of the bicycle culture in Minnesota taking place on June 14 to 18 in 2006 in Saint Paul, Cannon Falls, Minneapolis, Mankato and Stillwater. The highlight of the event is the Nature Valley Grand Prix professional stage race, ranked among the top three stage races in the United States. Other Festival activities include amateur racing, professional stunt rider demonstrations, the Caribou Coffee kids' run races, live music and family activities.

"Great River Energy has been an important partner to our event," said Festival director David LaPorte. "They took a chance in 2000 when we were a small event. The Festival events now draw over 50,000 people to the downtowns of our five host communities. This kind of growth just wouldn't have happened without Great River Energy."

Proceeds from the Great River Energy Bicycle Festival benefit programs at Children's Hospitals and Clinics in Minneapolis and St. Paul, the largest children's health care organization in the upper Midwest. For the past three years, the Festival's contributions have been directed to the Hospice and Palliative Care Program to pay for programs and services that would not be covered by insurance.

About Great River Energy

Great River Energy is a non-profit electric cooperative providing wholesale electric energy and related services to 28 distribution cooperatives serving nearly 1.5 million people in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Headquartered in Elk River, MN, Great River Energy is the second largest utility in Minnesota and the fourth largest utility of its type in the country.

About Nature Valley

Nature Valley, the brand that created the granola bar category in 1975, brings variety to healthy, active consumers looking for wholesome and great-tasting snacks. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Nature Valley is part of General Mills, a leading global manufacturer and marketer of consumer foods products.

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