Courage Classic: Bicyclists take to mountain passes to stop child abuse

More than 500 cyclists will pedal 162 miles over three Washington mountain passes today to help combat child abuse.

  • BY Wire Service
  • Friday, August 1, 2008 5:43pm
  • Life
Craig Davidson rides in last year’s John L. Scott Foundation Courage Classic Bicycle Tour

Craig Davidson rides in last year’s John L. Scott Foundation Courage Classic Bicycle Tour

More than 500 cyclists will pedal 162 miles over three Washington mountain passes today to help combat child abuse.

MultiCare’s 17th-annual John L. Scott Foundation Courage Classic Bicycle Tour, a three-day cycling event, begins today, inviting individuals and teams to raise money for the treatment and recovery of young victims of sexual abuse, physical assault and domestic drug abuse exposure. Every cent of the proceeds go to the Rotary Endowment for the Intervention and Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital in Tacoma.

Kent resident Chris Scott will take part in the journey this year for the for the 12th time. He says it started as merely a fun ride, but now it means more. Resident Lorien Farren will also ride in the event.

“It just sounded like a fun ride at first,” Scott, 46, said. “That was the original reason, but I kept at it because I would hear the stories of the things they were doing for the children with the endowment. I started thinking about if some of that stuff ever happened to my kids. I’ve got five at home.”

The ride begins on Snoqualmie Ridge, and riders cross Snoqualmie Pass to Suncadia Resort near Cle Elum. They continue the following day across Blewett Pass to Leavenworth. On the final day, they ride over Stevens Pass and finish in the town of Skykomish.

Riders raise a minimum of $400 each in pledges for the Rotary endowment. Scott, owner of local business Clean Right Window Company, said he asks for donations from his clients before the event, and many are usually willing to give. He said the most he’s raised for the cause is $1,650. Since its inception in 1992, more than $4.9 million has been raised by riders through the event.

Scott said it’s not an easy journey, and he recommends training as much as possible before the ride.

“You gotta be ready,” he said. “You can’t just grab your bike and go. Every individual is different, but the more you ride, the better off you’ll be.”

But it’s not all grueling. Activities and meals are provided along the ride. This year, riders will be treated to a jazz festival at Suncadia Resort.

“They usually have some pretty good entertainment, and they provide a lot of good food,” Scott said. “Legend has it you could gain weight on that ride if you’re not careful.”

MultiCare Director of Special Events Michael Shields echoed that warning.

“Many riders comment on how well fed they are during the ride,” Shields said. “The Rotary Clubs involved provide excellent food along the route, including a spaghetti feed, baked potato bar and banana splits. Many riders even comment they gained weight during the ride.”

For more information and to register for next year’s ride, call 253-403-4374 or visit

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