Rotarians are joining the Tour de Tucson November 20, 2021. Read more to learn how to donate or participate as a rider. Any donations made will be matched 2 for 1 by the Gates Foundation.
District 5650 Ride to End Polio
The Tour de Tucson is held every year on the Saturday before Thanksgiving.  This ride has raised hundreds of millions of dollars for charity since its inception in 1983.  Starting in 2009, Polio Plus became one of the charities supported by the ride.  Since then, $20 million dollars (before the Gates match) has been raised during the Tour for Polio Eradication.
PDG Tom Cardwell and Patrick Grewe from Lincoln South and PDG Gary Bren from Omaha Downtown are representing District 5650 in this year’s Tour.  Tom will be riding the 57 mile ride and Patrick and Gary will be riding the 102 mile ride.  
Why should you get involved?
There have only been two cases of wild polio virus so far in 2021.   We truly are on the verge of finally finishing this battle we began in 1985.  If you ask the CDC, WHO, and UNICEF who has been the pivotal partner in making this happen, they’ll tell you that Rotary has been the driver behind the success of the last 36 years. 
Now is the most critical time….we can’t drop our guard or we won’t make it to the finish line.    After the last case of wild virus is reported, we have to go three years with no cases before the battle is finally won.  This was accomplished in both India and Nigeria…two places where that goal was thought to be impossible. 
Your support will help insure that the investment of two generations of Rotarians bears it’s final sweet fruit….the eradication of Polio, once and for all. 
How can you get involved?
You can support one of the riders by doing a donation on the team page and you can cheer them on as Patrick and Gary will be livestreaming the 102 mile ride.  If you’d like to be more active, we’re encouraging clubs to do indoor rides and activities here in Nebraska and Iowa during the Tour ride.  You’ll be able to follow along with the Tour riders in real time.
There are a lot of ways to do the indoor ride…here are a couple:
  • Ride solo for a certain period of time or miles.
  • Ride as part of relay that will ride 102 miles.
You can either join the Team 5650 Raise for Rotary page for tracking the donations from your sponsors or set up your own Raise for Rotary page.  Remember that any donations made in support of your indoor ride will be matched 2 for 1 by the Gates Foundation.
The goal for Team 5650 is to raise at least $25,000 (before the Gates match).
Preview of the Tour event
Weather permitting, we’ll be doing a dry run of the livestream on World Polio Day, October 24th.   We’ll do a ride of at least 80 miles as dry run with the video livestream.  We’ll be publishing the livestream link on October 23rd.