Event Will Raise Money to Help People Living With HIV/AIDS in County
(Irvine, CA. — Oct. 6, 2011) —- The only cycling event designed to raise money for people living with HIV/AIDS in Orange County takes place Saturday, October 15. The event features century (100 miles) and metric century (62 miles) routes and begins at 7:30 a.m. at Saddleback College in Mission Viejo.
“This is a great ride for a terrific cause,” says Jorge Rodriquez, MD, who is chairing the event this year. “Cyclists can cover the 100 or 62 mile route – or ride as much as they like. It really is about the message not the miles.”
All money raised by the cyclists goes directly to client services provided by AIDS Services Foundation Orange County (ASF). Last year 100 riders took part and raised nearly $100,000. This year OCRA organizers are looking for an even larger turn out and hope to raise at least as much as last year.
“There are a lot of people around Orange County that depend on the services ASF provides”, says Chris Bragg, the nonprofit agency’s direct of events. “We’re working hard to meet our rider and dollar goals so we can continue to help as many people as possible.”
Participants include seasoned riders and beginners. Last year, Arash Samadani an ASF board member who had little cycling experience decided to borrow a bike and ride. Eleven hours later, exhausted, he crossed the finish line.
“To keep going, I kept telling myself if people have the courage to fight this terrible disease, I can keep peddling,” said Samadani.
Samadani, says the experience changed his life. Shortly after the first ride, he purchased his own bike and has been riding ever since. He says he plans to finish much sooner this year.
The OCRA route travels from the hills to the ocean primarily through south Orange County, passing along the Santa Ana foothills, through Orange, Irvine, Laguna Beach, Aliso Viejo and San Clemente before returning to Saddleback College. For those not riding the entire route, vehicles will be available to bring cyclists back to the Saddleback College start line.
The ride is fully supported and features several pit stops along the way with water, food, sports massage, medical assistance and bicycle repair available. Several businesses and organizations are lending their locations as pit stops. Among these are Oakley in Foothill Ranch, Allergan in Irvine and Madison Square & Garden Café in Laguna Beach. The ride concludes at Saddleback College.
OCRA is dedicated this year to the memory of David Wood, an avid cyclist who was one of the founders of the event.
The registration fee is $50 and riders are required to raise a minimum of $250. The $50 registration fee is included in that total. Rider check-in begins at 5:30 a.m. with the opening ceremony starting at 7:00 a.m. The route opens at 7:30 a.m. and closes at 5:00 p.m. A closing ceremony takes place at 5:30 p.m. Registration is available at www.ocriddeforaids.com or call ASF at 949-809-5700.
Annually, ASF helps about 1,600 men, women and children affected by HIV/AIDS in Orange County. Services include food, transportation, housing, case management, emergency financial assistance, children and family programs, Latino outreach programs, mental health counseling, support groups, HIV testing, and an extensive array of HIV prevention and education programs. To learn more about ASF go to www.ocasf.org.
Media contact: Barbara Lohman at 949-809-5751 (office) 714 342-7464 (cell) email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org