Janesville56.2°

Bicyclists set to race through region on Pie Ride

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ROCHELLE B. BIRKELO
June 10, 2010
— The Janesville Morning Rotary Club has been taking bicycle enthusiasts on the rides of their lives for a decade.

But for the first time this year, the courses they travel will be different.


“We wanted to do something special for our anniversary,” said Jere Johnson, event co-coordinator.


Courses typically took riders east of Janesville and onto the prairie, but this year they will ride west into Footville and Brodhead. This also will be the first time the club offers a 100-mile route into Green County through Brodhead.


“Our trademark is the family recreational bike ride. But we wanted to offer something special for those cyclists who like to do century routes,” Johnson said.


The 10th Annual Pie Ride on June 19 starts at Lions Beach and offers a 20K, 50K 100K and 100-mile bike rides with parking available at nearby Dawson Field.


The 20K course follows the Ice Age Trail to Peace Park while the 50K course continues to Footville.


“These courses are flat to moderate,” according to the event brochure.


The 100K course goes to Brodhead, while the Century course continues into Green County.


“This course is challenging!” the brochure reads.


All courses start and end at Lions Beach, Johnson said.


The ride, the largest of its kind in south central Wisconsin and northern Illinois, has grown from about 100 riders in early years to more than 700 riders last year.


“That’s our target this year,’’ Johnson said, “700 riders.”


It’s success is due to “more people becoming interested in recreational cycling,” Johnson said.


But there’s also the attraction of getting a pie at the end of the ride.


“Adding the pie to the ride has been our trademark. It’s something quirky that people have identified with over the years along with our event logo—a bicycle with the Rotary sign and a pie,” he said.


“The pies are always the topic of great interest,” Johnson admits.


“We get e-mails daily asking what kind they will be,” he said.


The pies provided this year through Piggly Wiggly in Brodhead will be the club’s standard cherry, blueberry and apple, Johnson said.


All proceeds benefit local community agencies. The ride netted $8,500 in 2006 and $14,500 in 2009.


Through the years, proceeds have helped fund high school scholarships, Big Brothers/ Big Sisters, DECA clubs at both Janesville high schools, House of Mercy, Washington Seminar and community projects from improvements at Monterey Stadium to Camp Rotamer.


IF YOU GO

What: Janesville Morning Rotary 10th Annual Pie Ride


When: Saturday, June 19.


Where: Lions Beach, 1401 Palmer Drive, Janesville.


Cost: $25 per person and $60 per family before June 15 or $30 per person and $70 per family on the day of race.


Registration form: Go online to www.pieride.org. All those who register receive a long-sleeved T-shirt and a fruit pie upon finishing the ride.


Event courses: The 100K (62 miles) and 100-mile courses start at 6:30 a.m. Rest stops open at 7 a.m. The 20K (12.5 miles) and 50K (31 miles) courses start at 8 a.m. The course closes at 4 p.m.


Other details: Rest stops and support vehicles will be on the course until 4 p.m. Helmets are required.


Post ride lunch: Brats & Bloom luncheon will include a brat, cookie, soda, chips and tour of Rotary Gardens for $5 each.


Contact: Jere Johnson, event co-chairman, (608) 756-6142; jjohnson@mhsjvl.org.


Bike raffle: Tickets are $5 each or five for $20 and available at Michael’s Cycles, 2716 N. Pontiac Drive, Janesville, and from Janesville Morning Rotary club members. Prizes are a $700 bicycle from Michael's Cycles; $100, $50, six-month Gold Janesville Athletic Club membership; one-year Rotary Gardens' membership, and Pizza Hut pizza once a month for a year.



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