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Cyclists and volunteers gearing up for Bike MS

By Ellen Bacca
Published On: Sep 07 2012 05:16:52 PM CDT

Union Point Park is bustling with cyclists and organizers in preparation for the annual Bike MS event. Last year the effort raised $ 1.7 million towards find a cure for Multiple Sclerosis.

"This year we are hoping for $1.7 Million," says Bike Coordinator Elizabeth Robson, "I checked an we are sitting right around $1.1 million. But we have until October to fund raise."

Each cyclist is required to donate at least $300 towards a cure. This year 2,100 cyclists and over 500 volunteers have registered for the event. Last year's top fundraiser, Elizabeth Page, is back again this year. She is the team captain for "Missing Spokes", a team now celebrating its twelfth year participating in Bike MS. Page was diagnosed about eighteen years ago. She says shortly after diagnosis, she had a big realization.

"I realized oh m y gosh not only do I have MS, I have a disease that there is no treatment for, no cure," says Page.

That realization is what has driven her towards raising awareness across our region.

"Well you know people are not aware of just how many folks do have MS. A lot of us are like myself and their walking around and you say but you look so good," says Page.

She says in North and South Carolina there are 13,500 people who have identified themselves as having MS. All are in need of a cure. 

"And that's what we need to do we need to find a cure we need to support all this fantastic research and we need to provide programs for people living with MS so that hey can live in the best possible quality of life," Page says.

Many Bike MS participants are personally effected by the disease. Union Point Park will be full this weekend with tents and stands. There is a back up plan for severe weather. The Convention Center and YMCA are prepared to provide shelter in the case of severe weather. 

Of course organizers are hoping for nothing but sun and fun this weekend.