Sign up for the ‘Tour’

Published 8:37 pm Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Time is running out for those who might want to participate in the 2017 Tour de Cure. The good news, though, is that time has not YET run out.

The American Diabetes Association’s annual fundraising bicycle ride returns to Suffolk this year, and organizers have set big goals for the day. They hope to raise $450,000 that will be used for diabetes awareness, research and support in and around Hampton Roads. To date, the organization has had 69 teams and a total of 661 participants register for the event, pledging and contributing more than $245,000 toward the effort.

Current trends, according to the ADA, indicate that by 2050, one-third of Americans will have been diagnosed with diabetes. Education and awareness of the disease, its causes, the ways to avoid it and the ways to live with it are clearly important, and the association’s mission will continue to be vital for a long time.

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Not that those aren’t reasons enough to support the organization, but the Tour de Cure is also a great day of exercise, fellowship and fun, and Suffolk has become well known among longtime participants for the great welcome it extends to the cyclists.

And what’s not to welcome? More than a thousand people are expected to participate in the event, and many of them will be visiting our fair city for the first time. While they’re here, they’ll buy gas, perhaps pick up a last-minute snack for the ride, maybe even stay around town for dinner at the end of the day. At the very least, they’ll get a look around Suffolk while on one of the long rides, and many of them will choose to come back for another visit after that introduction.

Of course, the folks at the Tour de Cure would love to have even more participation from Suffolkians, and it’s easy to get involved. Visit to register yourself or a team. There’s a $25 fee to register and a $200 fundraising minimum for each participant. From there, you can choose whether to enter the 10-, 25-, 65- or 100-mile rides. All will start and end at King’s Fork High School, where there will be food and entertainment available for riders and their support crews.

There’s still time, and this is a worthy and fun event. Go sign up now!