Gearing up for the 2015 Bike MS Ride

The 2015 Bike MS Praxair Ride, presented by Louis Dreyfus Commodities, will be held Sunday, June 7, in Windsor and Sunday, June 14, in Westport. Although there are two separate rides, there is only one destination in mind for these cyclists — a world free of MS.

Bike MS is a physical challenge for cyclists of every level, but it’s so much more than just a ride. The camaraderie, passion and memories that come from sharing the experience with family, friends and teammates last a lifetime.

Cyclists at the Westport location will gather Sherwood Island State Park and cyclists will ride the best of Fairfield County – from the beaches of Long Island Sound to the tree-lined roads of the countryside. Route for this coast-to-country ride include 10-, 25-, 62- and 100-mile options.

In Windsor, the ride will begin at Griffin Center Business Park and ride across the colonial countryside of Northern Connecticut, opting to cycle 10, 25, 50 or even 100 miles as well as a 2-mile kids’ ride. Cyclists can take in the serenity of Suffield’s farmland and test their speed against a Boeing 787 as they ride by the Bradley International Airport runway.

Last year, Bike MS attracted more than 800 cyclists and raised $559,000 for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Connecticut Chapter. The Westport ride attracted top corporate cycling teams from Praxair, Louis Dreyfus Commodities, Gartner, BTG Pactual, Wells Fargo and Xerox.

Finish line festivities include a barbeque lunch, live entertainment, local vendors offering product samples, free massage therapy and more.

The registration fee for this year’s ride $35 with a minimum fundraising amount per registered rider of $125.

Community partners include WTNH News 8 and WRCH Lite 100.5, which has supported and promoted the ride for almost 30 years.

More than 6,500 Connecticut residents are affected by multiple sclerosis, a potentially debilitating disease. The cause is unknown and there is currently no cure for MS. Symptoms can include numbness in the limbs, difficulties with vision and speech, stiffness, loss of mobility and, in some more severe cases, total paralysis. The progress, severity, and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot be predicted.

Funds raised by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Connecticut Chapter, through events such as Bike MS, ensure ongoing scientific research to find better treatments and a cure, as well as help to provide vital programs and services offered by the chapter to those in the state living with multiple sclerosis.

For more information on the 2015 Bike MS Praxair Ride, presented by Louis Dreyfus Commodities, or to donate, visit www.ctfightsMS.org.

Team captains Lew Schwartz, of Stamford, and Rich Jarrett, of Danbury, line up to cut the ribbon at the start of the 50-mile 2014 Praxair Bike MS ride, presented by Louis Dreyfus Commodities. Schwartz was captain of the Stamford-based Gartner team and led the team of 41 riders. Jarrett’s Danbury Praxair team had 43 cyclists.

Team captains Lew Schwartz, of Stamford, and Rich Jarrett, of Danbury, line up to cut the ribbon at the start of the 50-mile 2014 Praxair Bike MS ride, presented by Louis Dreyfus Commodities. Schwartz was captain of the Stamford-based Gartner team and led the team of 41 riders. Jarrett’s Danbury Praxair team had 43 cyclists.

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