Last week was a busy week for the People of the Bike. Two groups of Jewish New Yorkers held long-distance bike rides for their respective causes.
The second annual Bike 4Chai, on behalf of Chai Lifeline’s Camp Simcha (campsimcha.org) for children with chronic illnesses, took 335 participants, outfitted in blue-and-yellow bike shirts, 174 miles over two days from Piscataway, N.J., to the camp in Glen Spey, N.Y. The bikers raised more than $4 million.
And the Kosher Cyclists organization (koshercyclists.com) covered 500 in four days, from Niagara Falls to Brooklyn, in support of physically disabled members of the Jewish community; their immediate goal is funds for an electric wheelchair for a man with a severe muscle disease. The bikers raised $7,200.
The Camp Simcha riders entered the camp to a rousing reception. “To raise money and awareness for sick children collectively, in the name of our people, is a great show of unity and Ahavas Yisroel [love of the Jewish people],” said Rabbi Simcha Scholar, Chai Lifeline executive director. “And it reverberates here and across the ocean in Eretz Yisroel.”
Along the way, the bikers were treated to a BMX-bike stunt show.
The Kosher Cyclists, center inset, passed through the Finger Lakes and Pocono mountains. They spent each night with members of local Jewish communities, and joined local synagogue services.