- Posted October 11, 2009 by
Hammonton, New Jersey
This iReport is part of an assignment:
What if we all worked together?
Working the Lunch Stop at the MS Bike City-to-Shore Ride
OK, technically I did this last week, on Saturday, 10/4. I had signed up weeks before and couldn't get the Multiple Sclerosis Society to change the date.
Every year, the MS Society in New Jersey sponsors the City-to-Shore bike ride, a 150 mile round trip from Cherry Hill to Ocean City, 75 miles on Saturday and 75 miles back on Sunday. Typically approximately 7,000 cyclists participate to raise awareness and donations to help fight MS.
I am a big fan of these types of fundraisers and each year I ride on the American Cancer Society Bike-a-thon. For the MS ride this year, I volunteered to work at the lunch stop in Hammonton, which is about 26 miles into the Cherry Hill to Ocean City route.
I reported for work at 5:45am Saturday. My duties included: unloading the trucks, filled with bottled water, cases of peanut butter, jelly, bread, other beverages and other snacks. Dozens of volunteers worked to make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, ice-down the drinks, and set up the snack tables.
The first riders arrived at the stop at around 7:30am, and by mid-morning, the area was filled with thousands of riders, getting a well-deserved break from the grueling ride. As I also had trash duty, I walked around the lot, greeting the riders, and thanked them for riding as I emptied the trash cans and replaced the trash bags.
By 11:30am the crowd had dwindled as the riders continued on to the next rest stop in Egg Harbor and eventually to the finish in Ocean City, with one night to rest before the return trip on Sunday.
We then proceeded to clean up, loading the food back into the truck to be stored overnight for the Sunday crew to take it all back out again for the return riders.
As someone who frequently rides in these types of events, I always look forward to the rest areas and the friendly volunteers who provide needed relief, hydration, and food.
This time I enjoyed the opportunity to work the rest stop and help out the riders.