300 Miles for Mentoring celebrates five years of giving, 1,500 miles of cycling | SierraSun.com

300 Miles for Mentoring celebrates five years of giving, 1,500 miles of cycling

Special to the Sun
Hardy Bullock, left, and Mark Hockridge negotiate rural foothill curves to support Big Brothers Big Sisters mentoring programs.
Courtesy photo |

Five years ago, three cyclists had a plan: Ride 300 miles, get their friends to contribute money to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Nevada County and North Lake Tahoe, and help kids who need it.

Five years later, riders Hardy Bullock, Carey Thrasher and Ken Bossung have successfully completed that goal five years in a row and raised more than $55,000 for Big Brothers Big Sisters’ local mentoring programs. And like their enthusiasm for the cause, the group of participating riders has also grown to 15 cyclists from all over California.

This year’s ride will begin in Truckee on Sept. 12. The riders will head south along Lake Tahoe to Kirkwood, then up and over Carson Pass and down to El Dorado Hills, where the riders and support crew eat dinner. Following dinner, the bike lights are turned on and group rides another 125 miles back to Truckee through the heart of the Sierra Nevada foothills, finally ending 30 hours later back in Truckee at the Coffeebar.

“Our program is dedicated to providing one-on-one mentoring for kids who need a caring adult in their lives right here in Truckee and North Tahoe,” said Paul Raymore, board member for Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Raymore has driven the SAG vehicle each year, offering humorous support in the wee hours of the night as riders grapple to stay awake and keep the wheels turning. Raymore is also a dedicated Big Brother mentor, volunteer and eight-year board member. He has worked with Lindy Beatie, the new executive director, and Peggy Martin, director of the Truckee office to expand local programs.

“Paul inspires me to support this important mission — anyone who takes their time to get outside themselves and help others, especially kids who need guidance, is a hero in my book,” said Bullock. “Anything you love to do can help others, you just need to make it happen and involve yourself. The reward is unbelievable when you see the difference in kids and your community.

“… We are currently working with Big Blue Adventure to integrate this ride into a larger event. The goal is to build a sustainable, fun and challenging ride that lives on year after year, it’s cool to see this much interest in this ultra-distance event,” Bullock noted.

To support Big Brothers Big Sisters of Nevada County & North Lake Tahoe visit http://www.bigsofnc.org or call 530-587-7717. Follow the riders on twitter: @TahoeStaffTeam. To see the entire ride profile and donate go to http://www.300milesformentoring.com.