Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Police Unity Tour

Happy New Year! I think I forgot to say that before. I was pretty sick the week of New Years, so mine was a very quiet & sniffly one. It's only in the last day or two that I finally feel fully recovered. I'm not sick very often, but when I am, it always takes a major toll.

Also, thank you so much for all the tweets, emails & comments you've sent regarding the assault case. I really appreciate the support so many of you have shown. Now that it is finally behind me, I can move on to bigger & better things.

If you follow me on twitter (and if you don't, I don't blame you. I can be a bit of a chatterbox) you may have seen me tweeting about the Police Unity Tour. I'm going to apologize ahead of time because this Tour is probably going to take up a big chunk of this blog & my twitter account from now until May. It's my big "goal" for 2012. The first half of 2012, anyway.

What is the Police Unity Tour? In a nutshell:

The Police Unity Tour (Chapter 4) is a 3 day ride covering roughly 230 miles, from Richmond, VA to Washington DC. There are actually several chapters of the Police Unity Tour with various routes & mileage, depending on where they start from. They all converge in DC and ride together to the Candlelight Vigil during Police Week, where the donations that were raised are presented. The funds go to the National Law Enforcement Memorial Fund.

This is a particularly important ride for me, as I have more than a few friends with their names etched on that Memorial.

Do you remember Jim? The officer & friend I told you about back in the summer that died of hyponatremia during training? I'd like to share with you another excerpt from his blog--one that has always stayed with me:

I had one person ask, so let me extend this to everyone. The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial is on my beat (and I make sure its safe and skateboarder free) so if anyone wants a rubbing and can't make it down here let me know and I can get it for you. 

The following year, Jim's name was added to the Memorial. I know he still watches over it and keeps it safe and skateboarder free :-)

None of us know when it will be our time. We each wake up in the morning expecting to live through the day, but it doesn't always happen. Some of us are called to give our lives so that others might live. This is what sacrifice means.

The motto of the Police Unity Tour is "We Ride for Those That Died". It's a way to honor & remember those sacrifices, and to show our gratitude.

Besides training for the 3 day ride (which I will be blogging about), I also need to raise money for the Memorial. There is a minimum goal of $1700 by the ride, and $500 by the January 31st. I'm hoping to CRUSH that, and I need your help to do it.

  • If you look to the right---->, on the side panel, there is a Firstgiving Fundraising Widget. This is probably the easiest & quickest way to donate.
  • I will be holding a series of fundraising events from now until May. These will include:
    • A Fundraiser Happy Hour at Duffy's Irish Pub. The date is currently set for Wednesday, the 25th from 7pm to 12am. Purchasing a $10 wristband at the door will give you access to some pretty awesome specials that "regular folks" can't have.  I will let you know what they are as soon as I find out. This will be an awesome way to meet up with other cyclists & bloggers in the area, as well as enjoy some excellent food & drink and donate to a worthy cause.
    • Police Unity Tour STUFF you can buy: water bottles, t-shirts, maybe even some buttons. Heck, I might throw in some bike levers. I don't know. I will announce as soon as I do.
    • A Charity Bike Wash. This will probably happen closer to spring time, since its a little chilly out right now.
    • Group rides. I have two in mind: a law enforcement "tour" ride around the city, where we will stop by the memorial, museum, crime & punishment museum & the 7 police districts; and a Formal Wear Ride where everyone dresses to the nines.
If you have any other ideas for fundraising, please share! I'm a newbie at this.

Also, if you are a local business (bike shops, I'm looking at you) and think you might be interested in being a sponsor, PLEASE send me an email. I've got tons of info on what sponsorship means for your business. There are a few perks! Including tickets to this fancy-pants gala:

Super-fancy, guys. I think I might attend (and then wear the gown on the Formal Ride). I was looking at the menu, and I'm pretty sure I had no idea what 2 out of the 3 course meals were, that's how freaking fancy this Gala/Masquerade Ball will be. You know you want to go, right? If you do, hit me up. You don't have to be a sponsor to attend, you can go just for kicks & because if you are going to give to charity, you are going to be fancy about it.

As for the actual training, I plan to share that with you guys as well. I'm doing this ride with a coworker of mine, Mir, and we'll be doing some long rides together. I've ordered a new bike (since Betty definitely won't be able to handle this ride!) and can't wait to get my hands on it. 

Once it arrives, we'll start training in earnest. We'll probably be doing rides on either Sunday or Thursday mornings, and anyone is welcome to join. I'll tweet & post ahead of time in case any lovely readers would like to ride along with us. 

So, that's that. Prepare for similar blogs in the future. If you have any suggestions, please share! And as I said, if you are a business and would like to be a sponsor, get in contact with me! (An email link is at the top right).

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