IN KEY WEST THIS WEEKEND THRU TUESDAY -- Anybody There We Can Meet?

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    Nov 14, 2010 1:21 PM GMT
    Arrive Saturday afternoon Nov 20, stay until noon Tue Nov 23. Have a 2-floor suite above the Bourbon Street Pub on Duval.

    It's the conclusion of the annual SMART Ride bicycle fundraiser for HIV/AIDS, from Miami to Key West that begins this Friday morning. My partner & I actually leave tomorrow (Mon), staying at the Miami starting point 4 days to set up everything, and to do rider registration. So my online activities will be minimal for a few days, very spotty WiFi there.

    I'm just doing crew, not riding a bike again as I had originally planned. After my recent hospitalization my doctor (who's also the Ride Medical Director) forbade me to pedal down. But she'll let me crew, as well as my partner, who himself had a heart attack the week before my own hospitalization. But he's a founder of the Ride, and she knew no power on Earth could keep him from participating.

    So anyway, Friday we stay overnight at Hawk's Cay resort east of Marathon Key, and then arrive in Key West on Saturday to stay until Tuesday, if anybody from RJ can meet us. There's an RJ member who's sailing his masted boat into KW the same day we arrive who's already contacted me, and I hope we can get together.

    http://thesmartride.org/7/

    BTW, the rider on the far left in the orange helmet, with the blue handicapped parking permit on his handlebars from the SR home page (changing gif pic caption is "2 Days, 165 Miles, 100% to Charity"), is me! icon_biggrin.gif

    HomeBannerv.gif
  • joncfernan

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    Nov 14, 2010 2:40 PM GMT
    I think it wonderful you guys are involved with this event! I wish you guys much success and fun! icon_biggrin.gif

    Jonathan
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    Nov 14, 2010 2:57 PM GMT
    makarov99 saidI think it wonderful you guys are involved with this event! I wish you guys much success and fun! icon_biggrin.gif

    Jonathan

    Thank you very much! It's only my third, since moving to Florida, but my partner's tenth Ride.

    He was involved with earlier HIV/AIDS rides to Key West, before becoming a founder of the current SMART Ride 7 years ago. He's raised millions of dollars for HIV/AIDS agencies, a real hero. A few months ago he was presented with a special Founder's Award statue by the organization. I've cropped it here to block his face for his privacy.

    SmartRideevents025copy-Version2-1.jpg
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    Nov 14, 2010 7:27 PM GMT
    Hey Art_Deco....I like that piece of art.
    Is that by the same guy that made this?

    bike_the_florida_keyssafely_tshirt-p2359
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    Nov 14, 2010 9:31 PM GMT
    StudlyScrewRite said Hey Art_Deco....I like that piece of art.
    Is that by the same guy that made this?

    bike_the_florida_keyssafely_tshirt-p2359

    I don't know who made it. I'll ask the Ride Director David, who presented it to my partner, when I see him tomorrow night. But I may not be able to reply to you until next Saturday night, when we get into our Key West hotel, where I know we'll have reliable WiFi.
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    Nov 14, 2010 9:51 PM GMT
    makarov99 saidI think it wonderful you guys are involved with this event! I wish you guys much success and fun! icon_biggrin.gif

    Jonathan

    Thanks! My partner was a SMART Ride founder 7 years ago. The monthly planning committee meetings are held at our own place at no cost, people coming from all around Florida. My partner & I provide the Continental breakfast ourselves, and indeed all the committee members are unpaid & uncompensated, not a penny being taken from the money that riders raise.

    Thanks to corporate sponsors, and volunteers, we have virtually no operating overhead, no administrative costs. Unlike some charitable events, where upwards of 40% or more of the money raised goes to staff salaries and expenses, the full 100% of what riders raise goes directly to the 6 HIV/AIDS agencies in Florida that we support.

    That's extremely unusual, and we heavily promote that fact on our web site and in all our PR material. When I say my partner is a hero, who has helped to raise literally millions for HIV/AIDS agencies, and not a dime for himself, I am not exaggerating.

    http://thesmartride.org/7/
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    Nov 21, 2010 10:00 PM GMT
    Now in Key West with some time to kill on Sunday, after a very successful bicycle ride. And got to meet 09ARMYJOCK Saturday night at our celebration party at the Bourbon Street Pub. Really nice of him to have gone out of his way to drop by, buy me a drink and swap war stories with me. (Also to have phoned me first and inadvertently woke me up or else I would have missed it, sleeping upstairs at New Orleans House above the bar hosting the party, having passed out from fatigue after 4 days of prep and the 2-day ride itself)

    So another great RJ member I've had the pleasure to meet in person. Despite some contentious e-mails we exchanged earlier, I knew he'd be a wonderful gentleman in person (already being a senior officer), just the nicest guy to meet. I just wish I could have been a little sharper for him and not so ragged out.

    So now my partner & I are here until noon Tuesday, when we must return to the real world. But 1 more day of escape in the Conch Republic, with dinner tonight, then lunch tomorrow and another dinner with locals we know. Our dance cards are full! icon_biggrin.gif