Boulder, CO – October 21, 2013
The Cyclists 4 Jamestown Event, a fundraiser that took place on Saturday October 19th at the Bagi Mechanical Office Park on Foothills Highway, 2 miles north of Boulder, announced today that the proceeds from its activities have exceeded $100,000. The event, which featured a pro racer-led fun ride, a reunion of Coors Classic veterans, a demonstration of mountain bike stunts, silent and live auctions, and four live bands, is estimated to have drawn a crowd of several thousand people throughout the day.
“This idea started with the idea of just setting up a spot on the side of the road to collect money to help the people of Jamestown,” remarked Russell Chandler, co-chair of the event. “We had no idea three weeks ago that it would turn into such a festival of community support between the cyclists and the Jamestown residents.”
Jonathan Bartsch, a Jamestown resident and Coordinator of the Rebuild Jamestown Fund added, “The people of Jamestown and the cycling community have always supported each other, even though there has sometimes been tension. This event offered both groups a chance to really get to know one another, and develop a deeper bond.”
The highlight of the event was an emotional introduction of Jamestown mayor Tara Shoedinger and Jamestown Mercantile (aka, the “Merc”) owner Rainbow Shultz, who thanked the cyclists and other supporters who came together in support of rebuilding Jamestown. Mayor Shoedinger, Ms. Shultz, and many of the residents of Jamestown visited the Cyclists 4 Jamestown event following a memorial that was held for long time Jamestown resident and previous Merc owner, Joey Howlett, held earlier in the day at the Greenbriar Inn.
Mr. Howlett was killed during the flood when the hillside above his home gave way. Ms. Shoedinger remarked that Joey, who was considered the patriarch of the town was the first person to welcome cyclists to town, filling water jugs every morning until the day he died. Ms. Shultz thanked the group for their continued support while she and her husband work to re-open the Merc. The event concluded with a live auction and a special “paddle raiser” which raised more than $5,000 in funds to help re-open the Merc.
The largest donation for the Merc came from a woman cyclist who, intimidated by the climb, has never ridden to Jamestown and, in fact, has never visited the Merc. The donor was touched by Tara and Rainbow’s stories and didn’t want to see the owners (and Jamestown) lose the restaurant. She donated $1000. Rainbow hugged her afterwards and offered a free breakfast as soon as they could open. Mayor Tara told her, “If I can ride my bike to Jamestown, so can you”.
One couple from Boulder remarked they had received money from FEMA, but that it was far less than their damages. They felt that Jamestown needed the FEMA proceeds more than they and donated $1,500.
Earlier in the week, a young girl found a $50 bill in a restaurant. Unable to find the owner, she told her dad that she wanted to contribute it to a worthy cause. She brought it to the event and stuck it into the donation box with her proud father looking on.
Roy Burger, president of the Boulder Cycling Club, a co-producer of the event, commented, “Countless people came up the driveway and wrote sizable checks wanting nothing in return. We couldn’t give them merchandise, beer, or food or steer them to auction items. They simply wanted to help. Our volunteer flaggers on the highway were given cash by passing motorists all day long. They weren’t cyclists, but appreciated the event and just wanted to help. “
The organizers of Cyclists 4 Jamestown are planning on supporting a number of additional events including volunteer help crews for Jamestown and a bike sale at Community Cycles, both on October 26th, as well as a fund raiser planned on Monday November 4th at Hapa Sushi. Merchandise including commemorative cycling jerseys and bibs, T-shirts, and hats are available at the http://www.c4jtown.org website. Additional fundraising activities are planned through the end of the year, culminating in a community ride to Jamestown in 2014, once the road has been repaved and re-opened to cyclists. Rainbow is expecting that the Merc will be serving each of them large stacks of pancakes.
About Cyclists 4 Jamestown. Cyclists 4 Jamestown is an informal organization of volunteers representing the cycling community based in the Front Range of Colorado. Its co-chairs, Rob Andrew and Russ Chandler, are the organizers of the Wednesday Morning Velo, a weekly business networking bike ride that leaves from North Boulder from May through September, often traveling to Jamestown. The Cyclists 4 Jamestown Event was put on in cooperation with the Boulder Cycling Club, and more than 50 volunteers from the Boulder cycling community. All donations and other proceeds to the Cyclists 4 Jamestown Fund are tax deductible and are transferred to the Rebuild Jamestown Fund, administered by the Community Foundation of Boulder County, a 501 (c)(3) organization.