Howdy from hot and humid Military City, USA. I hope that everyone had an incredible 4th of July and we all made it through with all of our fingers and toes still attached. I am very proud of what our Project Hero HUBs have been accomplishing this summer. We’ve had members travel to Belgium for the start of the Tour de France and to Italy to cycle the beautiful scenery and enjoy some amazing food. We had a host of riders medal at the Warrior Games and the Senior Games last month. This was the first year we had a team at RABGRAI and our HUB Regional Challenge in Historic Frederick, Maryland was a huge success. I am constantly amazed by how well this community supports one another in everything that they do, from cycling to recovering from unexpected surgeries. Thank you all for such a great summer and let’s all keep up the smiles per mile!
Bikes4Vets program at the Inland Empire HUB
Last year Mark Weidhause and the Inland Empire HUB took over the Bikes4Vets program in the San Bernardino, CA area. The Bikes4Vets program takes in used bicycles and bicycle parts from the community and through the City of San Bernardino Police Department from abandoned bikes left in the city. The Inland Empire HUB members go through the abandoned bikes and part out what they can use. They refurbish the bikes that are salvageable and donate the bikes to local Veterans that can use them. This month they donated a bike to a formerly homeless Veteran to use as transportation to his new job. This well deserving and earning Veteran was kitted out with a new helmet, NightRider lights, lock, and pump! Congrats to the whole Inland Empire HUB on your efforts to help your fellow Veterans!
San Joaquin HUB
The San Joaquin HUB took a big initiative this summer to help local veteran, Timm Neagle, attend the California Challenge. The whole HUB rallied in support of Timm attending this years Challenge by posting on their personal social media pages, sending emails to their contacts, and asking their friends to support Timm before they started on their campaigns. Within a few days, Timm and the San Joaquin HUB raised enough funds for Timm. It was a group effort lead by HUB Leader, Gary Colburn. Great work by all and we are pleased to have Timm, Gary, and the whole San Joaquin HUB supporting this years California Challenge!
Las Vegas HUB
The past couple of months, the Las Vegas HUB has been working with local businesses to help support the riders needs and to sustain their community program. Firefighter, long time supporter, and HUB leader, Charlie Joerger, went to local businesses asking for their support. He pitched to them the need for tires, tubes, lube, maintenance items, nutrition items, and local reconiginazation in the form of HUB kits for riders. Charlie sold advertising on the back packets of the Las Vegas HUB jerseys to businesses. At this time they have raised $3,200 to support their local rides, and riders. Congratulations to Charlie and everyone that has helped the Las Vegas HUB!
Catching up with....
Dean Zenoni is a Marine and cyclist that runs our Utah HUB in Salt Lake City. Dean and his wife Lorri, have been a huge asset to the Project Hero family for a number of years. Dean is a Level 2 certified coach with USA Cycling, he graduated from UBI Bicycle Mechanic School and is a certified DT Swiss wheel-builder. The Utah HUB offers rides for all levels of riders, from beginner to ultra-endurance races. The HUB leads, with the help of other partnering local non-profits, monthly beginner and adaptive cycling opportunities and bicycle maintenance classes. Dean and Lorri have helped a number of people find their passion for cycling and have helped them through their recovery to achieve what they thought was not possible. Many of the beginner riders have gone on to complete the HOODOO 200 and 300 or the 500 relay, they have participated in Challenge Events, and even gone on to start their own HUBs. Through the years, the Zenoni’s have helped train new HUB leaders at training camps and helped reinforce training practices at Project Hero events. The Utah HUB may have a lot of trophies from races across the country but they are still focused on working with brand new riders to help them develop the skills they need to cycle safely and for the years to come. During the winter months, Dean can be found on the slopes working to help people learn to ski and on the compu-trainer leading weekly indoor cycling training sessions.
How long have you been involved with Project Hero? - I have been involved with Project Hero since 2009.
How did you get introduced to Project Hero? - I rode my first bike ride with the group at the California Challenge in 2009, just 4 months post neck surgery. I had to soak in ice baths in the hotel most nights after each day’s ride, but was always ready to ride the next morning. At the end of the 7 days, I was hooked.
When did you start a HUB? - When I moved to Utah in 2010, I was determined to set up a HUB in the Salt Lake area and in 2011, my wife, Lorri, and I established the Utah HUB. We have grown the HUB over the years to over 30 riders and an active race team that have participated in community rides, local and national races, international events, 200 mile one day races, local cycling camps, gravel events, winter indoor compu-trainer classes and participation with other non-profit organizations in and out of state. We also have had members of the Utah HUB represent at the Tour of Utah as podium presentations.
What is your favorite part of cycling? - As a rider, I prefer downhill, but will work the hill to ride the reward. I have ridden in torrential rain, hiked through rock slides on my bike that had just been clear an hour earlier and had my jacket soaked in horse patties (from a local parade in town) during an event. I have traveled internationally with my bike and my favorite trip was to France and the Normandy Beach area in 2011.
Bend MTB Regional Challenge
The Portland HUB is proud to present The Bend Regional Mountain Bike Challenge from Sept 5th to 8th. Registration is still open and fundraising minimum is set at $300 per veteran/first responder. The Challenge includes 3 days of riding in Bend with shuttles on Friday and Saturday. Lodging, breakfast, lunch, and two dinners are included. We have some great sponsors lined up and it will be an awesome experience!
California Registration is OPEN!
Registration for the California Challenge is open. This year we will be starting in Santa Cruz with a great kickoff dinner from our long-time friends at the Elks Lodge in beautiful Santa Cruz. The Challenge Ride this year will include the wild and scenic Big Sur, Solvang, and the always popular Stagecoach climb. New this year is participation in the Santa Barbra 100. All full-week Challenge participants have complimentary entry into the SB 100! Fundraising minimum is set at $700 for Wounded Warriors and we already have a few met and surpassed their minimum goal! We can’t wait to see you on the road with us!
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