Kool-Aid Cyclists Raise $10,000 in 10 Years
August 19, 2010, HASTINGS, NE – In the past 9 years, organizers of the Kool-Aid Classic Bicycle Tour had raised over $8500 for the Pioneer Spirit Trail, a hike and bike trail being built in and around Hastings. They needed only $1500 to reach the $10,000 mark in 10 years. But it didn’t happen without a lot of planning and help.
For the past year organizers of the Kool-Aid Classic Bicycle Tour, held in conjunction with Kool-Aid Days, a city-wide festival celebrating the creation of the colorful drink in Hastings, have been planning for the 10th anniversary of the event. Unveiling a new course with more distances for cyclists to choose from, organizers, known as Hastings Unique Bicyclists (HUB), chose to honor a discontinued but not forgotten flavor of Kool-Aid, Root Beer. The help came from Mother Nature, volunteers, sponsors and nearly 200 cyclists who registered for the event, a record number.
After a couple of years with rain, the morning of the event turned out to be gorgeous with clear skies, cool temps and a light breeze from the north. Cyclists from all over Nebraska and surrounding states rode their bicycles either 20, 40 or 65-miles through the quiet country roads surrounding the birthplace of Kool-Aid. With generous help from the cyclists and local area sponsors, $1950 was raised for the trail.
Of the 195 people who registered for the event, 33 were from Hastings and 162 were from out-of-town including 13 from other states (six from Kansas, four from Wyoming, and three from Colorado). Other Nebraska towns well-represented included 37 from Kearney, 26 from Lincoln, and 19 from Grand Island.
The event would not be possible without the support of the volunteers and sponsors. A special thanks to the volunteers that helped out before and/or during the event including: Doris Breckner, Bob and Sharon Breckner, Drew Ceperley and Amy Morris, Elmer and Barb Murman and Bruce and Alisa Sandahl.
Special thanks also to the sponsors who gave either cash or in-kind support including: Barista’s Daily Grind, Bauer & Howard Dental Care, Bike Shed of Kearney, Brown’s Shoe Fit, Eakes Office Plus, Eileen’s Colossal Cookies, Family Medical Center of Hastings, Five Points Bank of Hastings, Garden Café Grill & Bakery, Hastings Holiday Inn Express, Inkcredible Inc., Keith’s Pharmacies and Oakeson, Steiner & Lindsteadt.
In ten years, this event has raised $10,517 for the Pioneer Spirit Trail system. The money has been placed in a special fund with the Hastings Community Foundation to be used for the construction, beautification and maintenance of the trail system. In 2007, $6000 from the Pioneer Spirit Trail fund was donated to the City of Hastings to help purchase the land for the final section of Phase 2 between Elm Avenue and Osborne Drive East. Now a 5.2 mile continuous trail runs through Hastings from the train station on 1st Street, north along East Side Boulevard, east through Heartwell Park, north past Hastings College and Parkview Cemetery, west over to Osborne Drive East, across Hwy 281, west through Lake Hastings Park, south along Baltimore Avenue and through Libs Park. The master plan for the Pioneer Spirit Trail includes 20 miles of paved off-road pedestrian/bike trails in and around the city.
Next year’s event is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, August 13, 2011. For more information about the Kool-Aid Classic Bicycle Tour, contact tour directors Bruce and Alisa Sandahl at 402-463-1138 or email@example.com.
|As a tribune to Root Beer flavored Kool-Aid, this year's T-shirts were brown.|
|Cyclist prepare for the ride along side the farmer's market.|
|Walt Miller wears his T-shirt from the very first year.|
|This cyclists is enjoying a Kool-Aid Burst at the first rest stop.|
|The Uerling family had the largest number of cyclists from a single family with 5.|
|Everyone enjoyed Alisa's stop in Bladen.|
|Smiling cyclists are happy cyclists.|
|Everyone had a good time.|