Whether you’re a novice on two wheels or a competitor preparing for a Gran Fondo, the annual Simon’s Cycles YANA Ride offers something for cyclists of all ages and abilities.
Proceeds from the Aug. 21 event will benefit You Are Not Alone (YANA) — a charity that provides accommodation and funding to Valley families that need to travel outside the community for medical treatment for a child under 19, or for an expecting mother.
“Our planning crew is in high gear,” YANA executive director Marcie Dumais said.
Routes include 25, 50 and 100 kilometre rides, and a 6 kilometre family loop. There will also be a run bike event for little ones not yet using pedals.
The longer loops will incorporate various stops at fueling stations, while the family ride includes a scavenger hunt with clues hidden at parks.
“It’s meant to be celebratory and joyful,” Dumais said. “It’s important, particularly in YANA’s work when so much of it is sad and so much of it is hard and challenging, to be able to have those good times together.”
The event has been growing each year in terms of participant numbers and funds raised. The 2013 ride had 271 cyclists and raised over $28,000; 2014 attracted 411 cyclists and generated more than $39,000; and the 2015 ride had 525 cyclists and brought in more than $44,000.
This year, the fundraising goal is $45,000.
For the first time, organizers are capping the event at 600 riders. Registration will close the day before the ride.
“We want to make sure that it’s safe and high-quality,” Dumais said. “Sometimes events get so big they get out of hand. We don’t want the quality to deteriorate.”
The YANA Ride is another example of a local event that is driven by volunteers. For 2016, Dumais figures they are already have 60 to 70 people.
“Volunteers really add to the spirit of the event, and they’re so important,” she said. “We rely on about 100 on the day of.”
The ride is at 9 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 21 at Marina Park in Comox. Those who register before July 22 will receive a souvenir T-shirt, thanks to Dr. Andreas Conradi.
For more information or to register, click here ; those wishing to volunteer can call YANA at 250-871-0343.
The Artisans at Potter’s Place celebrate Market Days, July 16th, by celebrating community.
Chances are that if you live in the Comox Valley you’ll have been to Downtown Courtenay’s Market Days where the downtown core transforms into a veritable street festival. Like other retailers, Potter’s Place is getting ready for this busy day by offering a sale.
But this one is different than most sales; that’s because the artisans at Potter’s Place hold this sale to raise money for YANA Comox Valley to support local families who need to travel for the medical care of a child or pregnant mother.
“We have about thirty potters who craft bowls specifically for this event,” says organizer Joe Stefiuk. “For a $20 donation you choose your favourite bowl and we fill it with rice and homemade chili, you have a great lunch, keep the bowl, and best of all you’re helping families right here in the valley.”
Collecting a bowl, each year, has become a tradition for many Market Day shoppers.
“It’s very special for our potters as well,” says co-organizer Dawn Zilke. “They start working on these bowls early in the year and some of them even collaborate and work together.”
Keltie Schalm stopped by with her twins for a preview. “We’re a YANA family and we love the spirit of community that this sale represents, made with love in the Comox Valley.”
Drop by the courtyard at Potter’s Place during Market Days on July 16 from 10am to 2pm, while supplies last!
180 5th Street at Cliffe in Courtenay.
Registration is open for the Simon’s Cycles YANA Ride on August 21, 2016. Join us for a spectacular day of cycling and community spirit. Click here to register, to pledge or for more information.
Looking for a fun family event while supporting local non-profit YANA (You Are Not Alone), and the Mark Isfeld and Highland grads? Then the fourth annual Croquet for YANA event at Isfeld Secondary School in Courtenay on Sunday, May 1 and at Highland Secondary May 8 is the perfect fit.
The event will include the popular annual Croquet for YANA, the opportunity to test drive a new Ford vehicle, and grad car washes and barbecues.
Christopher and Wendy Smith initiated Croquet for YANA, in support of the local non-profit group that helps families cover the cost of out-of-town accommodation and expenses while a child is receiving medical treatment outside of the Comox Valley.
The Smiths started hosting the event three years ago, the day after their wedding. Chris lost his wedding ring somewhere on the croquet pitch and still has not found it saying “… it must still be honeymooning.”
Although the Croquet for YANA event has been successful, the Smiths understand that business owners can be overwhelmed by requests to support charities. So they began to explore ways to add to the charity event but lessen the blow to the business community by combining a number of charities under one tent. This year the Smiths are partnering with the Mark Isfeld and Highland Secondary grad executives to help with their grad fundraising.
The Smiths believe the concept of Croquet for YANA/Drive One for the Community is all about giving local business exposure for their charity efforts. Each supporting business is given a plot of land on the croquet field to advertise themselves anyway they want, but they must also add a croquet ‘hole’ with a start and end, and at least five wickets. It is just like mini golf.
Tickets are sold, by donation, to players wanting to play the various creative holes. Players are encouraged to wear colourful costumes and decorate or dress their mallets. Croquet equipment is all provided by the Smiths and no experience is necessary.
The activity is suitable for all ages. Last year, croquet players ranged in age from five to 90 years.
“It is a win/win,” said Smith. “Local businesses get to interact with the community, and the community gets a fun event to enjoy, and most important YANA gets much-needed support.”
Apparently a number of businesses are going the extra mile this year staffing their creative croquet holes with greeters to add instruction and encouragement to players.
Both school principals, Mark Isfeld’s Jeff Taylor and Highland’s Dean Patterson, support the events as part of YANA week in the schools.
YANA spokesperson Hugh MacKinnon gave accolades to the Smiths for their community leadership and sponsorship of this event. He also encouraged participation and thanked in advance support for YANA.
“A small community working together can accomplish amazing things,” Chris Smith said.
“Let’s come together on consecutive Sundays at 11:30 a.m. — 3 p.m. and support YANA, recognize the businesses that support our community and make some memories.”
Tickets, by donation, will be available at 11 a.m. at the pre-registration table in the parking lots at both schools prior to the event.
For more information, contact Chris Smith at 250-339-1860, Isfeld Secondary at 334-2428, Highland Secondary at 250-339-5525 or the YANA office at 250-871-0343.
And, remember, in the Comox Valley, You Are Not Alone.
The YANA office will be moving to 102 – 2456 Rosewall Crescent in Tin Town as of May 1. It is an exciting and busy time as we prepare for moving day. Fortunately we get by with a little help from our friends… in this case, a lot of help!
Grant Construction is renovating our new space to meet our needs and it is looking fantastic. This father and son team is showing YANA a lot of love while they volunteer together and share their talent. Painting-diva, Robbie Rusk, and her helpful side-kick, Kelly Rusk, are working their magic to ensure our walls are bright and freshly painted. Comox Moving and Storage will be moving our things free of charge. We are grateful for everyone’s efforts.
We will miss our downtown location and are forever grateful to Ives Burger Barristers and Solicitors who have provided us with a fantastic space for many years at a very low rate.
We are looking forward to our new neighbourhood and the lovely people and businesses in Tin Town. All our other contact information remains the same and there will be no gap in service to families while we transition to our new space. Please update our address in your records and come for a visit!
New address: 102 – 2456 Rosewall Crescent, Courtenay BC, V9N 8R9