Ride funds for hospitals
A GROUP of 31 cyclists will hit the roads between Kyogle and Bonalbo this weekend to raise money for their local hospitals.
One of the organisers of the Three Hospital Charity Bike Ride, Greg Watson, said the event, starting from Kyogle today, had turned into something even bigger than they expected.
"It's going to be huge," he said.
"This whole thing started because I'd been talking to someone from the hospital auxiliary about how money in the local hospitals was very tight.
"So me and a mate had half an idea (to do a fundraiser) and then after a dozen beers we came up with this.
"The next day we put it on Facebook and it just went nuts.
"Our original aim was to raise $3000 for the Kyogle, Urbenville and Bonalbo hospitals, but as we got going the response was amazing and we thought, 'Hey, we might get to six grand here'.
"Now we've already raised more than $11,000."
Raising the money was the easy part - the 31 participants still have to do a 250km bike ride.
Mr Watson said most of the cyclists were experienced, but some had only purchased bikes about three weeks ago.
"There are a few who will be in for a shock," he said.
"Day one is 66km from Kyogle to Bonalbo, and then we have a function at the Bonalbo Hotel (tonight).
"The next stretch is about 80km to Urbenville, through the bush, followed by another function at the hotel there.
"Sunday could be a struggle - we'll be hungover and still have to pedal 68km to get home.