Family-friendly bike ride to help prostate cancer sufferers

Keith Kebschull designs his annual Pedal for Prostate fundraising bike ride to be family-friendly and fun. It's not a race. It's an opportunity for solace and service and, hopefully, sunshine.
 
  Keith Kebschull
 
The fourth annual ride will begin, rain or shine, at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 19, from the parking lot at Aurelio's Pizza, 18162 Harwood Ave. in Homewood. 

The registration fee is $25 for individuals and for the first time, businesses or community organizations can sponsor a team of five for $75, a $50 discount. Teams can create special T-shirts for their members. The deadline for teams to register to get the special rate is May 3.

Kebschull is hoping for at least 75 riders this year. He said the event is intended to be recreational. It includes three routes, a five-mile trek through local parks and 15- and 25-mile jaunts through neighboring suburbs.

The short route is easy enough for beginning cyclists or kids, he said. 

"Last year, we added a very nice 15-mile route through the local streets of Homewood, Flossmoor and Olympia Fields," he said. "The half-way point is Tolentine Park. It passes by 13 parks, a couple of schools and takes mostly side streets. This is a very nice route and will continue this year."

In the past three years, the ride has raised $16,700 for the Cancer Support Center's efforts to help men and their families affected by prostate cancer.

Kebschull started the event after he dealt with the disease himself.

"I continue to organize the ride because of my experience with prostate cancer," he said. "I appreciated all the help and support I received from so many others after my diagnosis." 

He sees the ride as more than a fundraiser and awareness raiser. It's an opportunity to provide support and solace for cancer victims and their families.

"The ride helps all of us to come together and share our stories with each other as well as reaching out to others to give them support," he said. "I want the people to know that’s it’s OK to feel scared, alone, fearful of not knowing what you will go through with having a cancer diagnosis, and that it’s very OK to talk about it. Cancer is scary. The more I talked about it and reached out to others — it did help."

For more information about the ride, email [email protected]. To register, visit give.classy.org/PedalForProstate18

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