Members of the Rotary Clubs of Hughesville, Montoursville, Muncy and Williamsport are seeking area bicycle riding enthusiasts to help "Pedal Out Polio."
Last year, local Rotary clubs participated in the first districtwide "Rotary Pedals Out Polio" bike ride, which raised $22,000 to support Rotary International's efforts to eradicate polio worldwide.
This year from June 20-24, riders will travel more than 380 miles from Ashland to Renovo. The ride will end June 24 in Cross Fork, where riders from District 7370 will meet riders from District 7350.
Experienced and novice cyclists are invited to ride in the local portion of the bike ride from Sunbury, through Muncy, to Hughesville on June 23, or from Hughesville, through Montoursville and Williamsport, to Renovo on June 24.
Cyclists can choose to ride a few blocks, a portion of the ride, a whole day or all five days. Individuals who do not wish to ride bikes can make a donation of $25 or more by completing a form and submitting a check payable to The Rotary Foundation.
"We are so very close to eradicating polio from the face of the planet," said Tammy Hunsinger, assistant governor for the Lycoming County Area Rotary. "We hope area riders and residents will lend their support to raise funds for vaccine to help rid the world of this paralyzing and deadly disease. A child can be protected from polio for as little as 60 cents worth of vaccine,"
Water and snacks will be available for bicyclists.
Donations are fully tax-deductible and checks should be made payable to "The Rotary Foundation" with PolioPlus on the memo line. Any gift of $1,000 or more will receive special recognition from the Foundation.
Riders must wear helmets, sign an entry/waiver form, make a minimum $25 donation to The Rotary Foundation for each day they plan to ride and be responsible for overnight lodging and for making return transportation arrangements.
To ride with the tour, a separate registration form and donation will be required for each day.
Riders may join the tour at any departure point and leave when they choose. Signatures of parents or guardians are required for participants under age 16.
To obtain information on how to register to ride or make a donation to help eradicate polio, call Hunsinger at 312-0035.
To download information about ride details including planned stops, route maps, and registration forms, visitwww.rotary7370.org.
Riders also may register on-site an hour prior to scheduled departure times.
Before Rotary International implemented its program to eradicate polio in 1988, more than 1,000 children a day or about 350,000 children a year were afflicted with polio in 125 countries worldwide. Today only three countries - Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria - still are polio endemic, and less than 1,000 cases of polio are reported worldwide per year, a 99 percent reduction.