On Friday, August 5, as others may be wondering what they’re doing for the weekend, over 40 bicyclists plus support and gear personnel, many who are Veterans, will join the Northern Route in Hayward for the 38th Annual Heroes Ride. Their love of riding bicycles, support for our Veterans and love of The Highground are what motivates them to complete the three-day, 165 plus mile journey.
Everyone rides for a reason and riding has changed many lives. When asked why they ride in this event every year, Kathy and Mike Gleisner said, “The ride gives Veterans a chance to share their stories and enjoy a great trip across northern Wisconsin. Our riders are like a family reuniting once a year in memory of loved ones lost. For us it’s never been about the fundraising, it’s about the camaraderie.” This year, the Northern Route ride is in memory of Jim Griepentrog and John Southworth who both passed away shortly after riding in the 2021 event. Both were passionate bikers who loved the great outdoors and rode with the Northern Route for many years.
A few of the Northern riders will begin their ride on Wednesday, August 3 from the Spencer Kwik Trip and heading to Hayward in order to prepare for the official start of the ride. At 8:30am on August 5, at the Veterans Center off Hghway 27, all the Northern Riders will begin their journey. Along the way, they will be provided with meals or lodging by American Legion Post #218, American Legion Aux Post #425, Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic School, American legion Post #268, Blue Hills Kiwanis, American Legion Post #353, VFW Post #9464 and American Legion Post #118.
The Heroes Ride is The Highground’s largest and longest running fundraiser. This event helps the organization to continue focusing on programs for Veterans and families as well as provide education for visitors to better understand the tremendous sacrifices each and every service member has made. The Highground Veterans Retreats, Family PTS Support Group, Veterans Reunions and PTSD Book Program are known to relieve burdens and soften memories for many Veterans, their families and their friends.
For their continued generous contributions and support, each registered rider and SAG personnel receives an event t-shirt, recognition for their years of participation and sponsorship funds raised followed by a celebratory meal on the plaza and a short ceremony. Please join The Highground along the flag-lined road to help welcome our riders and support personnel as they cross the finish line.
The Highground is grateful for all returning riders and looks forward to welcoming new riders every year. There is still time to join one of the routes this year. Supporters who would like to participate are encouraged to contact the route leader for the route closest to them as soon as possible. Route information and an online registration option are available at thehighgroundheroesride.com. General event questions can be directed to Bonnie Pettis at 715-743-4224 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.