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Orange Beach Celebrates 29 Years of MS Sports Benefit

10 Sep, 2013


Cyclists to Ride for a Cure for MS Along Alabama’s Beaches

Gulf Shores LogoWhile many would describe a group bicycling as a race, it's more importantly a benefit, according to Jennifer Ely with The National Multiple Sclerosis Society (NMSS) and the cyclists of all different skill levels who come together with a common purpose at the organization’s 29th Annual Bike MS: Tour de Beach cycling event set for Sept. 20-22 on Alabama’s Gulf Coast.

“This ride is making a huge difference,” Ely said. “Every pedal, every mile matters.”

Hosted by the Hampton Inn & Suites in Orange Beach and the Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Sports Commission, proceeds from the two-day cycling fundraising event will benefit the Alabama-Mississippi Chapter of the NMSS. The fundraising and awareness event plays a significant role in the organization’s ability to direct $3 million each year toward research for the chronic disease diagnosed in another person every hour in the U.S. 

More than 400 cyclists are expected to participate in Bike MS: Tour de Beach this year with a goal to raise $200,000. Funds raised will support direct services for the more than 6,000 people with MS and their families in Alabama and Mississippi as well as national MS research to find a cure for this chronic disease of the central nervous system. Both teams and individuals can ride for a cure with a fundraising minimum set at $200.

“The ride has a long history, and we really appreciate all the support of the Gulf Shores and Orange Beach area,” Ely said. “It’s been happening for 29 years, and we are making huge strides due to the efforts of NMSS.”

The weekend event will kick off Friday evening with a pre-event packet pick-up party in the Hampton Inn & Suites banquet room. A celebratory banquet and awards ceremony is scheduled at the hotel at 6 p.m. on Saturday night following the ride. On both Saturday and Sunday mornings cyclists will depart from the hotel at 7 a.m. with a selection of 25-, 45- and 75-mile options.

Saturday’s race will take cyclists down back roads along Mobile Bay to Fairhope before returning to the beach. Then on Sunday, the route will take athletes along the Gulf Coast, finishing with a ride along the white sand of Gulf State Park.

For additional information or to register as a participant or event volunteer, visit www.bikeMSalabama.org or contact Jennifer Ely at 205-585-9112 or jennifer.ely@nmss.org.

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