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Tour de Pike returns March 21

The 21st annual Tour de Pike will be held Saturday, March 21, starting and ending at the new Christ Chapel building at 68 Old Zebulon Road in Zebulon. Several routes are offered and will take riders down stunningly beautiful areas of Pike County. Proceeds from the event will benefit Pike’s Backpack Program which provides weekend meals for local students in need. Meals are currently delivered each week to 60 local students. ’After a brief rest, the 21st  annual Tour de Pike has recharged and planned an exciting return in its usual rotation – the third Saturday of March – Tour de Pike will continue by celebrating the legacy begun by Mr. Don Collins,’ said organizer Mike Cox. ‘Due to the passing of the event founder in 2015, Tour de Pike took its perceived last ride in 2017. In honor of Mr. Collins and his hard work, Get Set Grow Race Productions obtained permission, in March of 2019, from the Pike County Kiwanis Club to re-launch this premier cycling event. You’ll enjoy the scenic beauty and smooth paved roads of historic Pike County with its turn-of-the-century towns and communities. Local police and SAG vehicles will sweep the ride to provide safety and assistance. At each rest stop, eyebrow-raising food will be available.’ The terrain will include gently rolling hills that pass horse and cattle farms as well as peach and pecan orchards. Riders are able to visit each community and have the opportunity to visit the historical sites located there. Check in, walk up registration and packet pickup begins at 6 a.m. with the pre-ride celebration starting at 7:45 a.m. and the cyclists taking off at 8 a.m. Medals will be presented to the top three male and female finishers in each age group, including 17 and under, 18 to 29, 30 to 39, 40 to 49, 50 to 59, 60 to 69 and 70 and up. The event will raise funds for the Pike County Backpack Program which provides school-aged children with meals for the weekend. The program is a partnership between the community and the Pike County School System. School counselors carefully select children in need and coordinate participation with the children’s parents. The school system also discreetly distributes meals. The program provides children with six meals for Saturday and Sunday. Bags are packed with two breakfasts, two lunches, two dinners, two snacks and juices. Fruit and special treats are included when available.  The children receive a bag each week, including holiday weeks. The bags average 8 pounds and cost about $7 each. There are 60 Pike County school children who benefit from the program each week. The program is powered by community churches including Christ Chapel Community Church, First Baptist Church of Zebulon, Mt. Gilead Baptist Church and Pike County Assembly of God, Methodist churches in Zebulon and Concord and civic organizations such as Kiwanis and Pike County Family Connection.’¯Â  For more, go to facebook.com/TourDePike/.

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