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Biking to feed people

The Verrazano Cycles team from Brooklyn smiles at the top of the Whiteface Mountain Veterans Memorial Highway in Wilmington. (Photo provided)

To the editor:

We are a community of passion. One that rallies around building community gardens, supplying and staffing bake sales and doing our part for volunteer-run organizations. All of them. We help pay our neighbors’ hospital bills when they need it. Fuel the meal train when a family has a new baby. Loan our pickup trucks and tools. Buy every book we know we’ll never read from library book sales, only to donate them back and buy them again the next year.

It’s what we do. We’re Adirondackers. We unite around each other. And we welcome the support of people who love our communities as much as we do, from wherever they may be.

When Bike Adirondacks started ADK Unite — a virtual run, walk and bike event — in the spring of 2020 with the support of WSLP and WLPW radio, we had no idea how much money we would raise for area food pantries. Furthermore, we also didn’t know if it would be successful. It was, with people are from 62 different cities and 16 states helping us raise over $4,000 for eight different community food banks.

Well, we did again last month and doubled our donation this year! Together, we raised over $8,000 for 10 different food pantries. And on top of that, we collectively moved 16,487.31 miles during the month of May. Dozens of local businesses drove that by sponsoring the event and registering teams. Bionique Testing Laboratories signed up their entire staff. NBT Bank, North Woods Engineering and The Reynolds Group kicked in, too, along with a number of community teams. Thank you.

But here’s the thing. It wasn’t just Adirondackers who participated. In fact, the team with the most miles moved (7,480.1 to be exact) was Verrazano Cycles from Brooklyn. Yes, that Brooklyn. Not only did they ride like crazy, including climbing Whiteface over the Memorial Day weekend, but they also donated extra when the event was over just to make sure we hit our $8,000 goal. That’s genuine heart.

ADK Unite will be back in 2022 to raise even more money for our community food pantries. But caring for others is year-round. It was a very difficult year for many, and while we may be moving toward better days, it’s important we continue to be there for those who need a little help. During the month of May, and every day.

Sincerely humbled,

Doug Haney

Owner and founder, Bike Adirondacks

Saranac Lake

P.S.: Here’s the 10 pantries we supported — each with an $800 donation: Lake Placid Ecumenical Food Pantry, Saranac Lake Interfaith Food Pantry, Tupper Lake Community Food Pantry, Waverly Food Pantry in St. Regis Falls, Black Brook Outreach Center, Jay/Wilmington Food Shelf, Star Lake Food Pantry, St. Paul’s Food Pantry in Vermontville, Keene Food Pantry and ACAP Food Pantry in Keeseville.

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