It may still be almost a year away, but riders in the annual Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer are gearing up to kick off fundraising efforts, training and team building.
Riders like Okotoks resident Jason Lampi are kicking off efforts to attract teams and participants as part of the Team Up Challenge, which wraps up on Nov. 10.
The challenge raises early awareness of the campaign and encourages people to take part in the ride.
“I find it’s a lot more fun to fundraise together because you get a little competition and you can hold a little party to try and raise money and it creates a sense of, ironically, teamwork,” said Lampi.
The August 2018 event is still a ways down the road and Lampi said he and other members of his team, Bob’s Warriors, are just starting to fundraise.
The team is led by a friend and former co-worker of Lampi who formed the group in honour of one of her friends who died of cancer.
The 2017 installment of the annual two-day event in August raised $6.7 million for the fight against cancer. Okotoks served as the mid-way point where riders ended the first day and started for the morning of the second.
Next year’s event will mark Lampi’s sixth time participating in the ride.
He said he decided to participate in part because he saw it pass through town one year and to honour family members who battled cancer. His mother is a cancer survivor and he lost a couple grandparents to cancer.
He said he first thought it would be a daunting task to raise $2,500 to participate in the ride.
Lampi found a team based out of Okotoks and joined up and starting fundraising. He said he has donors who have supported him each year he has participated in the ride.
Lampi encouraged anyone who is thinking about taking part in the ride to give it a try.
“Best case scenario is you make new friends, you support the Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary, you can specify where you want your donations to go, mine is pediatric cancer research,” he said.
For more information about the 2018 Ride to Conquer Cancer or details on how to sign up, visit ride.conquercancer.ca/alberta. To donate to Lampi or join his team visit www.conquercancer.ca/goto/JasonLampi2018.