Participants will cycle 165 miles to Key West

Fort Lauderdale, FL;  – This Friday, January 8th, approximately 500 bicyclists will depart Miami in The SMART Ride, a two day, 165 mile historic ride to Key West to raise awareness for HIV/AIDS in the state of Florida. South Florida has one of the highest new infection rates in the nation and these are most prominent in women and teens.

The Smart Ride was born out of a dream to make a real and significant difference in the lives of those infected, affected and at risk for HIV/AIDS. 100% of the funds raised from the ride go to five HIV/AIDS Charities throughout the state of Florida including; Broward House in Fort Lauderdale, The Center for Positive Connections in Miami, AIDS Help Inc. in Key West, Metropolitan Charities in Tampa, and The Hug Me Center for Children and Families in Orlando. This year so far, riders participating in the Smart Ride are close to raising a record $500,000 and over the past five years have raised more than $1.7 million

Riders will make their way to Morning Star Renewal Center located at 7275 SW 124 Street, in Pinecrest during the day on Thursday, November 13th. There they will check in, get safety briefings, browse the AIDS Quilt which will be on display, attend the opening ceremonies and have an under tent buffet dinner provided by Olive Garden Restaurants. The next morning, Friday, November 14, the riders will line up and to a fanfare of music and applause from the sidelines, will depart Morning Star at exactly 6:00 a.m. to make their way to Hawks Cay Resort in Duck Key for an overnight stay. They then depart Hawks Cay at 6:00 am Saturday for the final leg into Key West. The riders will complete a grueling 100 miles the first day and 65 miles the second day.

Upon arrival in Key West Saturday afternoon at approximately 2:00 p.m., the riders will be met in ceremony by the Key West Police Department who will escort them down Duval Street in the center of town to the Key West AIDS Memorial located on the White Street Pier. Duval Street during this time is lined with people welcoming the riders and congratulating them on their accomplishment. There will be a rally on the pier once all riders have arrived, the arrival of the rider less bicycle, and parties into the night at Graffiti and the Bourbon Street pub, both located on Duval Street.

During the two days the riders are housed, fed, and followed on the route by chaser cars, ambulances, motorcyclists for traffic control, and bicycle fix vehicles. There are pit stops every few miles where they can stop to rest and get water. The Smart Ride takes an army of over 150 volunteers to make this event run smoothly and to secure the safety of the riders.

The event is sponsored by American Medical Response and Lifeway (providing all medical supplies, ambulances, and medical personnel over the course of the event), Walgreens, Jet Blue Airways, Olive Garden Restaurants, Progressive Group of Insurance Companies, Coca Cola Inc., Tire Kingdom, Rosies Bar and Grill, Ameriprise Financial, The City of South Miami, The City of Key West, Century 21, Abbot Virology, Lamar Inc., Sidelines Sports Bar, Maroone Ford, Comcare Pharmacies, Hyatt Hotels, Broward Health Dept., Starbucks Coffee, and Bourbon Street Pub Key West.

This event, especially the entrance into Key West, will show well in print and on film. Press areas, and speakers will be made available at Morningstar for the ride off, and again at the AIDS Memorial at the White Street Pier Key West.

BrowardFor Further Information Contact;

Terry DeCarlo
Broward House Public Relations Director
954-522-4749 X 1221 Office
954-913-3347 Business Cell