Tomorrow we begin our 200-mile trek to Washington with our biggest group ever – 17 riders! Last year, it was a chilly, rainy evening when I wrote this first blog, with the send-off weather predicted to be 50 degrees and showers. This year’s a little different! Should be glorious weather for our event in the back of Foxdale Village Retirement Community (Marylyn Ave.). Join us at 3:45 p.m. if you can.
Astonishingly, we have already raised over $10,000 toward our goal of $12,000 – thanks to everyone who has contributed! Your gift allows PA Interfaith Power & Light to reach out to more people of faith who want to respond to the challenge of climate change. And this outreach is sorely needed.
As I said to Pastor Ed Seeley this morning: congregations seem to be the last place in our society where people of different backgrounds and political persuasions can come together. Ed is pastor of Orbisonia United Methodist Church, one of our hosts along the way. As pastor and as chaplain of the local fire company, he is an experienced community builder, and as we see more flooding rains and more drought due to climate change, this sort of community will be vital.
But here, I want to give you a peek behind the scenes at the preparation for a trip like this. Without all of Cricket’s hard work, and the help of our many supporters along the way, none of this would happen. With so many riders, we have split the group into three teams, led by Janet Swim, Ed Prince, and me. Ed will also serve as tour physician. Paula Droege, Dave Hunter, and Alex Yaney are driving a support car (electric and hybrid, of course!), and we have arranged two new places for the group to stay: Am Kolel Jewish Retreat Center in Poolesville, MD, and Steinbruck Center at Luther Place Memorial Church in DC.
The cyclists have also been busy: getting in shape, packing their gear, and joining training rides. Just last Monday, 10 cyclists rode together to Ferguson Township to witness Supervisor Peter Buckland (a 2015 cyclist) introduce an important piece of local legislation: a resolution for the Township to go carbon neutral by 2050. In the absence of national leadership, these local initiatives are essential. These efforts and those of our riders each year certainly give me hope that change is possible. If you haven’t, please read their stories on our blog. Each one is a gem.
As we begin this trip once more, we are all so very thankful for our corporate donors, for all those who support us along the way. AND, we are grateful to all of you for joining us on this trip, supporting us by your thoughts, prayers, and your donations to PA IPL.
Onward to Washington!!
—Jon (and the other cyclists)
Donate online to PA IPL in support of the PA-to-DC cyclists
or send a check, memo: bike 2017 to PA IPL 243 S. Allen St. #337, State College, PA 16801
MANY THANKS to our 2017 silver sponsor Sun Directed