Friday, March 27, 2009

How I got involved with Ride For The Feast - a riders perspective

I first heard of Moveable Feast when I was working for HERO.  For those that don't know HERO, it was a non-profit organization that provided HIV/AIDS-related services. It was the largest recipient of Ryan White funds in Maryland.  They did a lot of good work but there were several internal issues that led to it's eventually closure in late 2008.  Moveable Feast prepared and delivered meals to many of the clients of HERO.  Some received home deliveries and many received hot meals for dinner at HERO before it would close for the day.

HERO also ran the Baltimore AIDSWalk in which I participated.  While still working there many things came to light that made me less inclined to take part in the AIDWalk and I searched for something I could do that would help this same community and involve some form of outdoor activity.  I found the Ride For The Feast and Moveable Feast.  I was impressed with the work that I had seen Moveable Feast doing while working at HERO and as I looked up more information I became more interested in them.

I've done the ride now for 5 years and am looking forward to my 6th ride.  I continue to be impressed with the work done by Moveable Feast and by the volunteers they attract.  I've become much more involved with the Ride and have participated in the planning and am trying to help with the rider recruitment.  Last year I started a team with some of my friends who were also, unfortunately, some of my donors!  The ride has been great fun and really draws a fantastic and diverse group of people.  It's something I look forward to every spring.

Getting back in the saddle is always a challenge but I feel great by the time everything is done.  I want to encourage everyone to keep involved and have some fun along the way.  Moveable Feast does a great job of supporting the riders.  They also provide great meals along the way.  As I heard a rider say, "This is the only century ride where I think I GAINED weight!"  Who can resist with that kind of praise?

Keep riding, keep fundraising, keep supporting, keep helping and keep having fun!

-- Pete Castro
Co-Chair, Rider Recruitment Committee
Captain, Team With A Purpose - We're Full Of It!

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