Sunday, June 3, 2007
Today at 5AM, the 6th annual AIDS LifeCycle started at the Cow Palace. I managed to not make it to this always early send-off, but have a few friends riding, and a lot of cyclists whom I've interviewed over the years in my Sports Complex columns.
This year, about $11 million was raised.
You can keep up with their progess at the website, which includes photos and podcasts.
My friend Seth Eisen's page will include audio greetings on his progress, and you can send a goodwill greeting as well. Look up your friends, or pick some random rider and wish them well.
Here's a nice photo album on Flikr. As I look, it's got San Gregorio in all its foggy beauty, and some riders with cute hats.
It's great to see the AIDS Foundation continuing its success as an independent event organizer.
As you may know, they used to contract with Pallotta Teamworks (whose website is frozen in 2002, it seems) for such bike ride fundraisers. There grew many controversies over that, which I wrote about in my 1999 eight-part series for the Bay Area Reporter, "Wheels of Fortune."
Two years later, the AIDS Foundation dumped Pallotta, and others followed suit, leaving the for-profit business, accused (rightfully) of taking the lion's share of profits from AIDS fundraising. The company closed in 2002,
took its profits and ran away.
So, it's great to see the fund going directly to the nonprofits, even if they are still critiqued by some over what they spend it on.
But for now, simply celebrate the accomplishments of the riders as they complete their first day's ride.