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Scenic route provides fun while helping local charity

Wed, Mar 25th 2015 11:00 am
Riders take off at the start of last year's Gran Fondo bicycle ride to benefit Niagara Hospice.
Riders take off at the start of last year's Gran Fondo bicycle ride to benefit Niagara Hospice.
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The Hospice Gran Fondo to benefit Niagara Hospice is back for a second year, bringing its "party on wheels" to Niagara County. A Gran Fondo is a type of bicycle ride that originated in Italy and is becoming increasingly popular in the United States. The name translates to "big ride" and is known for scenic routes, open country roads, and fun pit stops to enjoy along the way. 

The Gran Fondo, presented by M&T Bank, is the first charity bicycle ride to feature several Niagara County wineries. The ride will be held May16 and will start and finish at beautiful Krull Park on the shores of Lake Ontario in Olcott, NY.

"Last year was such a big success, we had over 650 riders. We are hoping for an even bigger and better event this year," said Brendan McIntyre, Director of Development at Niagara Hospice. "We have three routes with stops at wineries along the Niagara Wine Trail. Our ride attracts all types of riders, from the casual to the more experienced."

Riders can choose a 15 mile, 30 mile, or 62.5 mile route. Each route will have refreshment stops at local establishments including Chateau Niagara Winery, Honeymoon Trail Winery, Midnight Run Winery, Victorianbourg Wine Estate, Schulze Vineyards & Winery, Black Willow Winery, and Woodcock Brothers Brewing Company. The post ride party includes live music, snacks provided by Tops Markets, and wine tastings provided by participating wineries.

Fundraising pages with the chance to earn custom cycling gear are now available for individuals and teams. All proceeds from the event will benefit programs and services provided by Niagara Hospice. For details about the ride, fundraising, and for online registration visit www.HospiceGranFondo.com.

Volunteers and sponsors are needed for the event. For information, contact Maureen Rizzo at Niagara Hospice at 716-280-0728 or mrizzo@niagarahospice.com.

Niagara Hospice has provided end-of-life comfort, care and support since 1988 to over 21,000 Niagara County individuals and families faced with terminal illness. No one is ever denied hospice care due to inability to pay. For more information, visit www.NiagaraHospice.org or call 716-439-4417.


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