AIDS action ride 2003

2002’s European AIDS Vaccine Ride proved a grueling challenge for us due to training and fundraising for an awesomely large 575-mile, seven day ride with a ten thousand dollar fundraising minimum. This year, we decided to face a different challenge; helping to create a brand-new ride benefiting those closer to home.

Since November 2002, we have been participating in meetings to help create and shape an AIDS Ride to benefit the AIDS Action Committee here in Boston. The AIDS Action Committee is both managing and benefiting from the proceeds of the ride, making it truly a grassroots effort.

The oldest and largest AIDS Organization in New England, AAC has decided to fill the void in the cycling community left behind after the demise of Pallotta TeamWorks which produced both the Northeast AIDSRide that Jer participated in two years ago and the European AIDS Vaccine Ride that we both rode in last year. Looking to continue raising awareness and money for the residents in the Boston area and the rest of Massachusetts living with AIDS, AAC has taken on the important task of creating a grassroots AIDSRide. Now in its 20th year, AIDS Action Committee has been a constant rock in the fight against AIDS.

As members of the planning committee since the first getting-to-know you meeting full of happy excited people to the meetings much closer to the events, full of determination and delicately polishing off last details, we feel like we’ve seen this event being born and grow. It’s been a great experience to plan this ride with old friends like Bobby Mac, our illustrious trainer (see our pictures), and Rustem of Quadcycles (where we bought our bicycles), and new friends as well, like Robbie Samuels, the production coordinator for the ride. Everyone involved is fully committed to making this ride safe, fun, and cost-effective for the beneficiary of the event.

This ride is distinctive in that riders can choose a one-, two-, or three-day course, with proportional amounts of fundraising. The three-day course goes from Pittsfield, all the way on the west border of MA in the Berkshire Mountains to the historic haunting town of Salem, on the eastern border, 225 miles in all.

This year has been full of wonderful events for us. We have been blessed with many weddings of great friends, milestone family birthdays, and the purchase of our first home. Because we had less time to train, we decided to take the one-day route. We will be riding the final 50 miles starting from Weston, MA and ending in Salem. Together, we have a thousand dollar fundraising minimum, but would like to raise at least double that for this worthy beneficiary.


Unfortunately, Jer and Sha both got sick right before the ride. Jer managed to heal enough to ride the final day, but did not take any pictures. Sha was barely well enough to drive to Salem to pick him up at the end of the day.

Thank you to all those who helped with your generous donations. The funds went to a very worthy cause.