The hills of New England await the cyclists participating in the Anchor House Ride for Runaways this coming week.
For the first time in the history of the annual event, the 500-mile, week-long ride will begin from New Hampshire on Sunday after a send off at Arm & Hammer Park in Trenton from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. on Saturday.
The annual charity bike ride raises money for Anchor House, the Trenton-based nonprofit that provides emergency shelter and other services for runaway, abused and neglected children in the greater Mercer County area. Last year the ride raise more than $525,000 from individual donors and corporate sponsors.
Cyclists and the 27 support crew members participating in the ride collect donations for Anchor House. The cyclists spend months training for the ride, logging in hundred of miles on their bike in all kinds of weather to get in shape for the trip.
The 177 cyclists participating in this year’s ride will begin pedaling back to the Garden State from Manchester, New Hampshire on Sunday, July 10. They will bike across Massachusetts, making stops in Leominster, Northampton, and Lenox before entering New York. The cyclists will then pedal to Kingston, and Matamoras, Pa. before they reach New Jersey on day six. On the final day of the ride on Saturday, July 16, they will bike from Bridgewater to Hopewell, and then to the Quaker Bridge Mall for a 3 p.m. welcome home celebration.
On Thursday, members of the support crew team loaded vans with supplies and the cyclists put their bikes on a truck headed for New Hampshire. The cyclists will take buses up to the starting point, and then pedal back, averaging about 75 miles a day on the 7-day ride. The longest day, Friday, will be 84 hilly miles.
Visit Planet Princeton for daily ride coverage and photos by participants Jeanne Imbrigiotta, Tom Imbrigiotta, and Tom Florek.
Krystal Knapp is a cyclist and embedded reporter participating in the 38th annual Ride for Runaways. For more information about Anchor House or to make a donation visit www.anchorhouseride.org or call (609) 278-9495. Checks can be made out to “Anchor House Foundation” and sent to P.O. Box 2357. Trenton, NJ 08607. Anchor House is a 501(c)(3) organization. Donors receive a thank you, but Anchor House never sells your contact info. or sends donors further requests for donations.