America by Bicycle stops in Worthington
WORTHINGTON — After 29 days on the road, 42 bicyclists and six staff members stopped in Worthington Monday afternoon on their cross-country journey with America by Bicycle. The tour company hosts bicycle tours across the United States to provide a unique opportunity to see what the nation has to offer.
Ride coordinator Jeff Lazer said the current 50-day, 3,700-mile tour began in Astoria, Ore., and will culminate in Portsmouth, N.H. Riders range in age from 22 to 77 and come from all walks of life and all over the globe.
The ride averages 80 miles per day, and riders are welcome to travel at their own pace. The group will spend three days in Minnesota, traveling today to Mankato.Lazer added that a large portion of the group has joined the ride as an activity to check off of their bucket lists. However, others — like Ronnie Yourell — ride to raise money for a cause. Yourell, a Manchester, N.H., native, is riding to raise money for cancer treatment.Yourell has battled cancer since the age of 4 and now, at 46, has three different forms of the disease. She said she wants to complete the ride to encourage other women with cancer.“I would like to show to other breast cancer patients that cancer is not a death sentence,” she said. “You can do what you want with a positive mental attitude.”Each morning she completes a chemotherapy treatment before taking to the road. To date, Yourell has raised $72,000 in sponsorships. The money will be used for other women to participate in the same treatment program she is in. Eight other riders are also participating for various charities.The group of cyclists also helped others affected by recent storms in the area. Lazer shared that during a pit stop in Luverne, the riders were moved by the condition of the area and donated a total of $500 to help with cleanup efforts.
Daily Globe Reporter Robin Baumgarn may be reached at 376-7323.