What a week! The ride is over, but the stories live on. We’ve heard several themes on what it is that makes this event special and keeps riders (and, luckily for us, volunteers) coming back year after year. Some of the most common include:
The Scenery – Whether you’re on a bike or in a support vehicle, Cycle Oregon gives you seven straight days of being immersed in scenery that you just don’t see every day. Getting up early, being kissed by the sun, working hard and simply breathing fresh, clean air and just being out there is something that’s so soothing to the soul it’s a wonder any of us go home at all.
The Connections – Many lasting friendships are forged on Cycle Oregon (there have even been more than a few weddings that have resulted from or happened on this event). Some of these friendships continue outside the event and others exist only in September but all have a special meaning.
Cycle Oregon also lends itself to building connections with the host communities. Cycle Oregon loves to shine the spotlight on out-of-the-way places that offer secret delights. And the locals enthusiastically take the stage to tell us the backstory of each town so we feel welcomed and invited to return.
The Changes – We also hear stories about ways that riding a bike can change people’s lives for good. Events like Cycle Oregon can be and frequently are used to help recover from health issues, to aid in sobriety, or to create a foundation for a healthier lifestyle.
The Challenge – That transformation from “I don’t know if I can” to “I did it!” is a mighty big one.
Of course this is only the tip of the iceberg, the rest of the story needs to be told by you. What did you learn? Who did you meet? What did it mean to you? Please let us know in the comments section below.