The sixth annual PEAKS to Conga bicycle ride is Saturday, June 25. The fully-supported 68-mile bicycle ride from Cody to Shell raises funds to support cancer patients in the Big Horn Basin. Volunteers help PEAKS (People Everywhere Are Kind & Sharing) raise money to donate immediate, short-term gas and grocery assistance to local cancer patients experiencing financial hardship. Last year alone, the PEAKS to Conga ride raised more than $20,000 to assist cancer patients.
“PEAKS to Conga has been an inspiration to many,” said Laurie Parker, event coordinator. “It brings people together from all walks of life to support the same cause.” This year is also dedicated to remember a special lady who inspired PEAKS to Conga. Although Flo Fuhr has passed on, her ambition and passion lives on through the people who ride.
Among those people is Stacia Jensen. Jensen has been a dedicated supporter of PEAKS to Conga, starting the ride its inaugural year. Her fondest memory as a rider was receiving a delicious peanut butter and jelly sandwich from a kind gentleman, which gave her the extra boost she needed to finish the ride. Jensen later learned his name was John Jackson and he was fighting cancer.
“His passionate spirit to help others was so inspiring,” Jensen said through tears. “John passed away, but as a tribute to him and his kind heart, I am determined to continue the tradition of handing out peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to the cyclists participating in PEAKS to Conga.”
Many patients have reaped the benefits of PEAKS to Conga. In one case, a grant recipient lived 90 miles away from St. Vincent Physician Network – Cody Radiation Oncology, where she received her radiation treatments. PEAKS donated a $300 gas gift card so she could afford the travel expenses that she incurred while following her treatment plan. The donation from PEAKS inspired the recipient and her family to “pay it forward” and create their own charitable event in support of cancer patients.
“It’s amazing to see how this event has evolved in the past six years,” said Parker. “Our first year, we had less than 20 cyclists and raised $400; last year more than 100 people participated in the ride and we raised more than $20,000. That’s pretty incredible. And it’s all staying right here in our community, helping our friends and family.”
The ride will start at 7 a.m. on Saturday, June 25 at Absaroka Bicycles in Cody located at 2201 17th St. Items needed for a successful ride include: a bicycle, spare tube, helmet, water bottle and sunscreen. Support vehicles will be provided for those needing assistance. Participants of all ages are encouraged to ride.
After the ride, participants and spectators are encouraged to stick around and enjoy a “Shellebration” downtown. For those coming out for the evening, tickets at the door are $10 for adults and 18 & under are $5. There will be a silent action and post ride massages. Kathy’s Southwest Kitchen and Mama Z’s Boy will be there selling food. The Branding Iron Bar will be selling beverages. Live music begins at 8 p.m. at the Shell Hall featuring world renowned Wylie & the Wild West.