Join the “Nothing But Spokes” 184 mile bike ride fundraiser

“Nothing But Spokes” – 184 mile bike ride to raise funds for Imagine No Malaria

Southwest District Superintendent Jim Todd invites fellow bicycle riders for a major ride this summer to raise funds to help combat malaria!  The Southwest District of the Eastern PA Conference has organized a ride called Nothing But Spokes to raise funds for the Conference’s Imagine No Malariaefforts.  We are inviting bicycle riders from across the Annual Conference (and beyond) to solicit pledges and to ride as a group 335 miles from Washington, DC to Pittsburgh, PA.  The ride will take place June 17-24, and the Eastern PA Conference group will be part of a larger organized ride sponsored by the Rails to Trails Conservancy, which will provide most meals, medical and bike repair support, transportation of luggage, among other things.

 Riders will have a choice of starting in Washington, DC, or starting in Pittsburgh and being transported by motorcoach to Washington, DC for the beginning of the ride.  Before the ride begins, the group will hope to meet with representatives of the General Board of Church and Society headquartered near Capitol Hill, and Bishop Thomas Bickerton of the Western PA Conference has promised to meet the riders at the conclusion of the ride in downtown Pittsburgh.  Bishop Bickerton has spearheaded the denomination’s efforts to raise $75 Million in the Imagine No Malaria campaign.

The route of the ride from Washington, DC to Pittsburgh is very safe and involves very little cycling on roads.  It is also a relatively flat ride, with minor inclines along the way.  The first 184 miles will be on the C&O Canal from Washington, DC to Cumberland, MD, and the remaining part of the ride will be on the Great Allegheny Passage, a rail trail from Cumberland to Pittsburgh, PA.  The cost of the ride is $975, and riders are asked to pay the initial $250 to register.  The remaining part can be paid through the fundraising efforts required by each of the riders.  Riders will be challenged to raise $5000 each, with a minimum of $2500 required to be raised to go on the ride.  Churches have already shown a great willingness to sponsor riders from their churches.  There will be a series of practice rides prior to the main ride in June, with each rider biking more than 500 miles total to help combat malaria.

Interested?  Please contact Pastor John Pfeil at West Willow UMC (717-464-3211) or by email at:  Fundraising tools will be provided to all those interested in riding.  Those not riding but wanting to contribute, are encouraged to send a contribution payable to: “SW District, United Methodist Church” (mark “Nothing but Spokes” in memo line), c/o Southwest District Office, PO Box 271, Bird-in-Hand, PA 17505-0271.  Contributions can also be made through Pay Pal (membership in Pay Pal not required), by clicking on the Southwest District website at:   Your contribution is tax deductible and will be acknowledged.

Prayer coordinator for the ride is the Rev. David Ryan, who may be contacted by email  Information about the ride can be found at:

Another great event to help improve Global Health:  West Chester UMC’s Beat the Bug 5k Walk/Run on April 22: