PARKADE: Century bike ride to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities of Mid-Missouri

Thursday, September 22, 2011 | 7:46 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Oct. 1 will mark the first Show-Me 100 Bike Ride, a set of four rides that supports the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Mid-Missouri at Parkade Plaza.

The event offers four distances, tailored to meet the skill levels of different riders. The century ride is 100 miles for more experienced riders and teams. There are shorter options for families and beginning riders.

Rides begin at 8 a.m. and starts are staggered throughout the morning, ending with the three-mile Family Fun Ride at 10:30 a.m.

Rides begin and end at the Parkade Center parking lot, and the public is invited to join. There will be live music, vendors, an appearance from Ronald McDonald and a beer garden to greet the riders as they return to the parking lot.

Ronald McDonald House Charities aims to provide a "home away from home" for the families of seriously ill or injured children, according to the event's website.

The event was the brainchild of Michael Morgan, the owner/operator of several area McDonald’s restaurants. Morgan wanted to do something for the house that was also a passion of his.

A bike ride was the answer, said Barb King, director and development communication for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Mid-Missouri.

Currently there are 40 registered riders, but King expects more participants to sign up throughout the week. The event hopes to raise $45,000 toward the Ronald McDonald House, to pay for general upkeep for the facility in order to make it as comfortable as possible for the families staying there, King said.

Registration costs $25 until the morning of the event, and riders agree to raise $200 minimum.

For more information, call the Ronald McDonald House at 443-7666 or go to the Show-Me 100 Bike Ride page.

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