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MSU’s second annual Gran Fondo cycling event raises funds for skin cancer research | Community Spirit

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MSU’s second annual Gran Fondo cycling event raises funds for skin cancer research
MSU’s second annual Gran Fondo cycling event raises funds for skin cancer research

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.-- Michigan State University College of Human Medicine announces plans for its second annual Gran Fondo on June 28, 2014.

Italian for “Big Ride,” proceeds from this this non-competitive cycling event go towards programs to increase awareness, prevention and detection of skin cancer and supports MSU’s skin cancer research.

"While skin cancer is the most common type of cancer, it is largely preventable,” said Marsha D. Rappley, M.D., dean, MSU College of Human Medicine. “It is inspiring to see the community rally behind such an important cause that touches so many lives. When we work together, we can accomplish great things in the fight against skin cancer.”

MSU Gran Fondo riders of all skill levels can choose between four scenic courses varying in distance. The 12, 25, 40 and 80-mile routes begin in downtown Grand Rapids. Participants on the MVP 12-Mile Family Ride will enjoy the trails through Millennium Park, while 25 and 40-mile participants will follow the twists and turns of country roads running along the Grand River Valley toward Lake Michigan. The 80-mile participants will ride all the way to North Ottawa Beach in Grand Haven. All routes return to The B.O.B. in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids for the Finish Line Festival. The outdoor after-party will offer craft brews and wines, a grand feast and live music for all riders.

Event registration is now open at msugranfondo.com. Cyclists can participate as individuals or teams. Fees are $60 and will increase to $70 on May 1 and $80 on June 1. Riders under 12 years of age can participate in the 12-mile family route at no charge with adult registration. A minimum fundraising goal of $50 is set for adult cyclists. Participants can use fundraising tips and tools available on the website.

Last year’s inaugural event raised more than $100,000 for MSU skin cancer research and drew 1,500 cyclists from 15 states and Canada.

Community Partners and Sponsors 
Presenting Sponsor – Huntington Bank; Title Sponsor – Priority Health; Sponsors – MVP Sports Clubs, Wolverine World Wide, Sysco, Delta Subaru, Downtown Grand Rapids, Inc., Lacks Enterprises, Inc., Pepsi Beverages Company, BDO, Courtyard by Marriott, Consumers Energy, Founders Brewing Co. and Gentex. Founding Partners – Advantage Benefits Group, The Gilmore Collection, BISSELL Homecare, Inc., Herman Miller, Mercy Health, Rhoades McKee and West Michigan Spartans.

MSU Gran Fondo Executive Planning Committee
Tony Charameda, Herman Miller and Ultimate Cycle Challenge; Marc Dettman; Mike Guswiler and Katy Tigchelaar, West Michigan Sports Commission; Robert Hughes, Advantage Benefits Group; Debbie Knapp, Huntington Bank; Kim Kordecki; Course Director, Kim Lemmen, Angela Shea, Ellery Daniels, Gilmore Collection; Josh McBryde, Greater Grand Rapids Bicycle Coalition; Laura Melendez, Gilda’s Club; Amy Miller, Priority Health; Bill Ryan, Ryan Marketing Group Technologies; Jim Verlinde, PNC Bank; Mark Brieve, Ellen Harburn, Susan Lane, Kate Follett, Chelsea Dubey, Geri Kelley, Jerry Kooiman and Amy Sawade from Michigan State University College of Human Medicine.