I’m blessed with an amazing extended family. So I hesitate to blog about any one member… but it’s simply amazing what my brother Dave is up to this week… biking from Oceanside, California to Annapolis, Maryland in 6.5 days. At this moment he must be passing from Indiana into Ohio… about 2,300 miles down, 700 to go. Go man, go!
This is all part of RAAM… Race Across America. Dave is on a four-man team… two in their 70s, one in his 50s and Dave in the mid-40s… the oldest bunch on the course… called PAC RATS. Here are his team results by stage.
So if you see a blur go by on the road between Ohio and Annapolis in the next 24 hours, holler a cheer for me! Wish I could be there.
UPDATE: Hey! Congratulations brother Dave and his fellow PAC RATS… they finished today (June 18) about 2:30 PM at Annapolis… averaged a little better than 18 MPH for 3,000! I’m looking forward to hearing some stories from him.
UPDATE 2: They did it… broke the record. Dave’s team averaged 18.21 MPH across the United States, beating the old record for “old men” (four-man team, 60-69 years avg) of 17.87 MPH. Here’s Dave on a steep ascent in Maryland, followed by a shot of the team after the finish…
The seventh 4-person team, the PAC Rats, finished just 16 minutes after Utah Neuro Sciences Research with a time of 6:21:30 to establish a new record speed of 18.21 mph in the 60+ division. They beat the old record of 17.87 mph set by Dave Tanner & Richard Rupp’s Team Hoosers last year. PAC RATS have the oldest rider in this years race – 75 year old Lew Meyer. Their crew chief was RAAM legend Lee “Fuzzy” Mitchell who told me Chris Stauffer (his health was too poor to allow him to be on the team) was the emotional leader of the crew. Also on the crew was Rob Kash and former Calvin’s 12 Hour Challenge organizers John & Ann McKinley. Rider Don Peters said that Lee’s rotation of 4 on and 4 off worked brilliantly.
The good people of the Town of Westford are engaged in a running debate about deciding some local issues, like the school budget, via traditional town meeting vs. Australian ballot. Front Porch Forum has hosted many well-conceived postings about this from a variety of angles.
I was struck by Mary’s posting on the FPF Westford Neighborhood Forum today where she hammered home the importance of citizens getting educated on the issues before weighing in, whether it’s at Town Meeting or a ballot box.
She went on to say…
Front Porch Forum is an excellent tool for distributing information, but obviously it does not reach everyone in town. Which leads to sending out much information to the public to prepare them for what they are voting on.
I will say between info mailed, The Forum and added meetings helped out tremendously with preparing us for the [failed school] unification vote.
An idea to share: check with your neighbors and see if they belong to Front Porch Forum. If not, highly recommend they join. If you know of elderly people who do not use computers, offer to print out the forum postings once a week or every other. They would probably love to read this info and people’s postings.
About one-third (270) of Westford households subscribe to Front Porch Forum so far, with more joining every week. Last month, FPF published five issues of the Westford Neighborhood Forum per week, each issue comprised of about five postings from residents.
Cool local success, Epik, is hosting an Online Marketing (OM) Boot Camp in Burlington, VT, June 17-20. These are good folks who do great work, so I recommend it. Google and Champlain College are also co-hosting. They’re even offering some grants to cut the cost for select Vermont businesses. I’d be there if I wasn’t already booked… I’ll be co-leading a workshop about building online community at the American Press Institute based on our work with Front Porch Forum.
[Disclosure: Epik is a sponsor of Front Porch Forum.]