Conway Advocates for Bicycling and the Conway Interfaith Clinic have teamed up to organize Conway’s first fall bike ride, the Conway Fall Classic.

The ride will be Sept. 19, starting with registration at Simon Park. Routes will be eight, 25 or 50 miles. Longer distance rides begin at 8 a.m., and the eight-mile community ride will begin at 10 a.m.

A tax-deductible registration fee will be $35 per individual or $50 per family, and proceeds will benefit the nonprofit organizations presenting the ride. The registration fee also includes a T-shirt, catered lunch and support stations along the route.

Peter Mehl, president of Conway Advocates for Bicycling, said,  "We wanted to have more events for cyclists in Conway in the surrounding area. We don’t have a fall tour in Conway. We have the Tour de Toad in the spring, but we don’t have a fall bike ride. We have two rides that are longer that will appeal to people who have been riding longer," along with the eight-mile community ride, which is geared toward newer riders and families. 

Kittie Aaron, executive director of the Conway Interfaith Clinic, said, "We need people willing to ride that day. It’s going to be a fun time. Our hope is to have at least 150-200 people."

Mehl noted, "I’ve been telling other cyclists I know this is a great warmup for the next weekend, the Big Dam Bridge 100."

He said in a press release, "The 50-mile route has a variety of terrain, with some good uphills and some exciting downhills. It will be a real challenge for any cyclist."

Regarding the partnership between the two nonprofits, Aaron said in the release, "It’s a really wonderful fit. We are committed to keeping the working uninsured healthy, and bicycling is a great low-cost, high-return activity for health and wellness."

The two groups will share the proceeds from the event, Aaron said. The Interfaith Clinic provides medical care to the uninsured of Faulkner County, and CAB works to increase awareness of bicyclists’ rights and responsibilities and to provide events for cyclists.

Following the ride, lunch will be provided by Ruby Tuesday at 11 a.m. at Simon Park.

Registration forms are available at www.conwayfallclassic.com, Conway Interfaith Clinic and The Ride Bicycle Shop. Bicycle safety, route details and parking information are available on the CAB Web site at www.cycleconway.org.

(Staff writer Rachel Parker Dickerson can be reached by e-mail at rachel.dickerson@thecabin.net or by phone at 505-1277. Send us your news at www.thecabin.net/submit)