The month of July is often associated with the greatest bike tour of all time — the historic Tour de France.
But not many would chose July for a bike tour of South Carolina, especially when temperatures of late have been on 10-day, consecutive streak of 95+ degree highs.
That’s not stopping more than 300 cyclists who are embarking on a three-day, tour de Palmetto State for a great cause: fighting Alzheimer’s disease.
Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive, degenerative neurological disorder that currently impacts 84,000 people in South Carolina and a total of five million in the United States.
The eighth annual tour, “A Ride to Remember,” is a 250-mile journey that starts in Simpsonville on Friday morning, has stops in Newberry and Orangeburg, and finishes at the Hampton Inn at Patriot’s Point in Mount Pleasant Sunday afternoon.
Riders are expected to arrive via the Legare Bridge over the Ashley River and Ravenel Bridge over the Cooper from about noon to 3 p.m. on Sunday.
Taylor Wilson, a spokesman for the S.C. chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association in Columbia, said the effort has raised $347,871.76 as of Wednesday afternoon, but “that number is still climbing.”
According to the ride’s website, the rider who ranks third in fundraising if former local TV anchor, Nina Sossamon Pogue, who has raised nearly $7,000 toward a goal of $8,000.
Her rider profile page reads: “This horrible disease effects my family and is taking my Dad. He was diagnosed with Alzheimers this year. He’s at the beginning of this journey. My Aunt Nina is living with Alzheimer’s and would not know me if I visited.”
“This is a frightening reality for so many families and it certainly scares me as I age. I love to ride and this year I will do so with purpose.”
Wilson said the money will be used for support programs in South Carolina and for research on a national level.
“The money is used to provide support programs and education to those facing Alzheimer’s and other dementias along with their families to improve care and access to resources. Some of the funds are also used to support ongoing research to find a cure to Alzheimer’s,” said Wilson, noting that the disease is the sixth leading cause of death in America.
Taylor added that among the top 10 causes of death, Alzheimer’s is the only one without a cure, treatment or “even a way to slow it down.”
Ashton Houghton, Vice President of Development for the Alzheimer’s Association South Carolina Chapter, said the association is grateful for both the riders who raise the money and the volunteers who make the ride possible logistically.
“Their dedication mirrors that of caregivers across the state who persevere in the fight against Alzheimer’s every day,” said Houghton.
Donations are accepted online at www.aridetoremember.org.
In the longest running “beach run” in the area, the Isle of Palms Beach Run will mark its 24th year at 8 a.m. Saturday, starting from the beach behind The Windjammer. Youth fun runs follow at 9 a.m.
The summer-time beach run started as the Sand Shark Run, a four-miler (two miles out, two miles back), in 1993. The Isle of Palms Recreation Department took it over, changed it to a 5K and in 2012, added a 10K to the mix.
Last year’s event drew 204 finishers in the 5K and 96 in the 10K. Not bad for what arguably may be the hottest run in the Charleston area due to the mid-July date , no shade and the likelihood of little to no wind at that time of the morning.
Registration fee is $35 for the runs and $15 for the youth runs. In-person, late registration starts at 7 a.m. Saturday.
Time for some high fives?
The finale of the fifth annual, five-race, 5K series — Race the Landing — will be held Thursday at Charles Towne Landing.
The event features a kids run at 6:15 p.m. and a 5K at 7 p.m. The fees are $12 for kids and $30 for the 5K and includes a full meal and awards ceremony.
Race founder and director Lisa Deaton said she is always amazed to see “new faces to running” at the race, which is raising money for CTL’s zoo and to purchase hearing-and seeing-impaired devices for the park. http://www.racethelanding.com/
Charleston is very conducive for taking yoga outside of the studio.
This time of year, yogis can enjoy instructor-led classes on local beaches, parks and even on paddleboards. Those who might water that water experience but on a more stable surface have the chance to participate in a new series of classes: Yoga on a Yacht, the second of the summer.
At 10 a.m. Saturday, Carolina Girl Events will host yoga instructor Ashley Bell for an hour on the top deck of The Carolina Girl, docked at Ripley Marina 95 Ripley Point Drive), followed by a social hour with a champagne toast.
The fee is $25 in advance and $30 on Saturday. http://ashleybellyoga.com/events-2/