Sponsoring the search for a cure

Published 10:59 pm Friday, March 13, 2020

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The Hampton Roads Tour de Cure is planned for this May with support from corporate sponsorships, and also the continued partnership between the American Diabetes Association and the city of Suffolk.

“The city of Suffolk is happy to once again host the Tour de Cure,” Suffolk Economic Development Director Kevin Hughes wrote in an email Thursday.

Hughes added that the Tour provides a spotlight and fundraising opportunity for the important work performed by the ADA, in addition to being a fun and exciting event for riders, runners, walkers and other participants.

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“Suffolk’s relationship with the ADA continues to grow and flourish and many of our organizations, companies and citizens benefit from the support and education provided by the ADA throughout the year,” Hughes wrote.

The Tour de Cure is the premier fundraiser for the ADA, and supports research and advocacy efforts that help more than 34 million Americans living with diabetes, according to diabetes.org.

One of the corporate sponsors for the 2020 Hampton Roads Tour de Cure is Massimo Zanetti Beverage USA, which has participated in the Hampton Roads Tour de Cure since 2016, according to Suzanne Ary, senior manager of communications for Massimo Zanetti Beverage USA.

Information about the upcoming Tour is being shared with Massimo employees in Suffolk and Portsmouth, including helpful training advice, such as the fun bike paths to practice on that are in Suffolk.

Ary said that the event ties into the company’s “Way to Care” and “Way to Wellness” programs. According to an email from Ary, the mission of MZB Way to Care is to provide opportunities for employees to make a difference in their local community, while the mission of MZB Way to Wellness is to encourage a healthy work-life balance.

“(Massimo Zanetti Beverage USA) is passionate about promoting wellness in regards to (the) prevention of Type 2 diabetes, as we have employees affected by diabetes,” said Dorothea Hescock, senior manager of corporate quality and assurance and food safety. Hescock is also the team captain for Team MZB this year, and a Type 1 diabetic herself.

“We are so grateful to several Suffolk businesses for their annual support of Tour de Cure, through sponsorships and in-kind donations,” Deanie Eldridge, the executive director of the American Diabetes Association for the Virginia and West Virginia, wrote in an email Friday. “Their contributions support the event and truly make a difference for people living with diabetes in Western Tidewater and across our region.”

The Hampton Roads Tour de Cure is planned for May 2 at the Suffolk Executive Airport, 1200 Gene Bolton Drive.

The registration fee is $30 through the day of the event. The fundraising minimum will be $250 for each cyclist, $100 for each walker and runner, and $50 for participants ages 12 and younger.

The event has routes for both cyclists and runners. There will be 12-, 30-, 62- and 100-mile routes for cyclists, a timed 5K for runners, and a one-mile route for both runners and walkers.

The fundraising goal for this year’s Hampton Roads Tour de Cure is $500,000. As of Friday evening, about $198,079 has been raised for the event, with 68 teams and 430 total registered participants.

For more information on, visit the 2020 Hampton Roads Tour de Cure website at diabetes.org/hrtdc.