How Do Fund-Raising Bike Rides Work?


Active Member
Oct 4, 2010
[COLOR= #0000ff]Hey, y'all![/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]If you've never heard of Fat Cyclist, you might want to check out that website to know what I'm talking about at, in his blog for December 22. Even if you don't want to know what I'm talking about, I highly suggest that you check out his site, because the guy is a serious cyclist, and his blogs are really, really funny. [/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]Anyway, Fatty (he says to call him that) has a team (Team Fatty, lol) that goes on Livestrong fund-raising type rides, and the next one his team is going on is in Davis, California in June. Being a cancer survivor, myself, I am considering joining his team and maybe going on the ride, since Davis is so close to where I live. [/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]The thing is, I don't have a CLUE even what these kinds of rides entail. I don't know how fund-raising works, or how long the rides are, what's expected of you, etc. It appears from reading his blog that he is asking each of his team members to raise at least $250 in pledges or whatever they're called. How does that work? Do you just get people to promise to donate a certain amount for each mile you ride, or what? How do you collect from them, if you do manage to get them to pledge? How do you prove how many miles you rode? Do all the team members know each other? Does everybody have to ride all the way to the finish line, if it's 200 miles, or can you stop when you've hit your limit? I actually don't even know what Livestrong IS, other than that it has to do with Armstrong and that he beat testicular cancer. [/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]Have any of you ever done a fund-raising ride like this kind? If so, any pointers you have for me would be really appreciated. I did ask Fatty some questions about it through his web site, but haven't heard back yet (and he admits he's notoriously bad about getting back to people -- but then, he has at least 500 people who email him all the time, so I'm sure I'm way down on his totem pole). I also went on the Livestrong site, but all I could find there were pop-ups of people wanting me to join THEIR team. If I join anybody's, it will likely be Fatty's, because a) he makes me laugh, and b) I fit right in with his team name and c) his wife died of breast cancer, I am a survivor of it, and cancer research needs supported. [/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]I'll look forward to hearing from those of you who have done this kind of thing![/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]Thanks!![/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]Sierra[/COLOR]
THere are quite a few ways fundraisers can work and it will depend on the one you are doing. Usualy pledges are what a person will pay( sponsor ) you if you complete the ride. Most of the rides are set distances and alot of them have multiple distances so everyone no matter what the fitness can take part. I havn't heard of any rides where people might sponsor you a certain amount per mile ( or kilometre ) you complete, but thats not to say there arnt any.

Usualy these rides have a website in which people can make there donations ( pledges) often via paypal. Some even get banks on board where you can go into any branch and leave your donation there.

Livestrong is a foundation set up by Lance Armstrong, it raises money and donates to many organisations. You will find that at some of the races Lance attends they will have fund raises for his charrity whilst he is there, and he will often donate proceeds to local charities organisations in the area of the race.
Another great way to raise funds to support your cause is to offer commemorative cycle wear at your fund raising events. Shift Cycle Wear actually can help organizations and charities raise funds without incurring any costs whatsoever with our model. We basically front all the costs for the organization, and then pay a large percentage of sales revenues to the fund raising organization. It's not only a great, fun way to raise money, but it's also stress-free for organizers AND it provides great keepsakes for riders and supporters to commemorate the event! :) email us at [email protected] anytime to learn more!
Some charity rides take credit card information at the time of registration. These usually have set amounts to be raised to ride in them. One in particular here has multiple distances and days that all require a certain level of fund raising to participate. So heres how the fund raising goes. You now contact your friends and family and have them make contributions in your name on the charities web site. If you raise enough funds from your canvassing you are free to ride. If not they take the balance from your credit card. I believe but may be wrong that you still can solicit funds from people beyond the deadline to recoup your cost. If not then you most likely can take the fee pulled from your credit card as a deduction on your federal income tax.
[COLOR= #0000ff]Thanks, Dave.[/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]That makes sense, anyway. I spent the last couple of hours reading more about their rides on the Livestrong site, so am maybe beginning to understand how that part works.[/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]What I can't find on either LIvestrong or is information about the ride itself, like how many miles are required, etc. I'm assuming they have different cut-off points for different levels of cyclists, but I would hate to find out too late that that was a stupid assumption, lol. Even if I could do 100 miles a day by July (and I have my doubts about that), I don't think I could do that IN July, when it'll be 110 or so, since I tend to pass out when I get too hot. But if that's the case, I could still collect pledges and do the ride on my trainer or something, and get them some support that way. [/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]I have to admit, though, being in a group of 1500 cyclists or so who are all committed to one cause sounds pretty exciting -- as long as I'm the last one so I don't hold anybody up. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/biggrin.gif[/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]Thanks for the info![/COLOR]
Hi Sierra. Told you you'd like him. If you have the time read his archives. They start in 2005, Some are totally hilarious some are really touching. Most of the info you're seeking are in there somewhere. And most Livestrong rides give you varying distances to ride. There should be a website for the Davis ride at Livestrong. Be safe, Dean
[COLOR= #0000ff]Hi, Dean.[/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]I do really love Fatty, and I've read a lot of his archives. I just broke down and sobbed over the ones about his wife. As a breast-cancer survivor, they touched home. [/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]Thanks again for the link![/COLOR]

[COLOR= #0000ff]Sierra[/COLOR]
Charity rides such as MS-150 rides, and many cancer rides, are pretty expensive if you're looking at them solely as bike rides. You're in Central Illinois, IIRC - if you were just out to do an organized ride, a better way to get your feet wet (so to speak) would be something like AIBR (Around Illinois Back Roads,) put on by the Joliette Bicycle Club. Clubs offer organized rides to raise operating funds; and they're not as greedy as the big charities, who often don't want to talk to you unless they stand to make $1000 or more off you. The club ride is smaller & more personal. And they're a LOT cheaper - you can pay for the ride on your own; and when you ask friends for donations, they know it'll all go straight to the charity instead of to the ride.

Sheldon Brown had something to say about 'thons,' and these big charity rides are very similar in that you're asking people to donate money for you to do something 'hard' and 'unpleasant.' Either that or you're asking them to fund your vacation. I find either possibility objectionable. Sheldon, BTW, had MS.

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