FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Cyclists to ride 337 miles on the East Coast Greenway in Maine for fundraising tour
Date; Durham, NC — From July 31 to August 6, bicyclists will pedal 337 miles from Calais to Portland, Maine, on the East Coast Greenway, a 3,000-mile trail route that extends from the Canadian border in Calais to Key West, Florida.
The bike ride is a Week A Year (WAY) tour hosted by the East Coast Greenway Alliance (ECGA) to help fundraise toward developing and improving the route. The tour not only benefits the East Coast Greenway, but supports the communities the group visits. The ECGA estimates that the Maine Tour will bring more than $10,000 to local economies over the course of the week, primarily through hotel stays and restaurant meals.
Hailing from Maine, neighboring New England states and as far as Florida, the group of 17 riders and ECGA staff will explore the northern-most portion of the East Coast Greenway. Riders will enjoy the ECG’s longest continuous off-road route section, the soon-to-be 87-mile Down East Sunrise Trail, the popular Kennebec River Rail Trail and the scenic Androscoggin River Rail Trail.
"We are excited to host a bike tour in lovely Maine this summer," shared ECGA Executive Director Dennis Markatos-Soriano. "Participants are eager to experience the state's natural beauty and rich culture. And we appreciate the hard work of our local and state partners helping to make their adventure a great one."
The Maine Tour will also visit the historic towns of Ellsworth, Bangor and Augusta before riding to the scenic “Forest City” of Portland, Maine. Riders will average 48 miles per day, with the longest day being around 67 miles.
Winding through America’s most urbanized corridor, the East Coast Greenway connects cities, towns and communities along the Eastern Seaboard. The ECG is emerging as a tourism destination for millions of visitors and a safe route for exercise, recreation and transportation for the 60 million Americans who live near the route. The 3,000 mile route is currently 31% on greenways, with the rest on roadways until greenway sections are built.
The annual WAY tours are the ECGA’s largest fundraising events, as tour riders raise funds or donate to support development of the East Coast Greenway. Trails and long-distance routes like the East Coast Greenway attract active travelers and have the opportunity to boost local economies, especially in rural communities and towns along the way.
The East Coast Greenway Alliance (ECGA) is the non-profit organization leading the development of the East Coast Greenway (ECG), a 3,000 mile trail route from Calais, Maine, to Key West, Florida. Headquartered in Durham, NC, the Alliance promotes the vision of connecting local trails into a continuous route; provides strategic assistance for states, counties, and municipalities that build local trail sections; officially designates trails as part of the ECG trail system; posts signage; and makes maps and guides to facilitate use of the Greenway. The ECG passes through 15 states, connects 25 major cities along the Eastern Seaboard, and creates a safer environment for active-transportation users of all ages and abilities.
About the Maine Sports Commission - The Maine Sports Commission aims to promote Maine as a four-season destination for sports events and sports-related meetings and to increase their economic impact in the state by attracting new events or by growing existing sports-related events, including professional, collegiate, amateur, and youth sporting events.
The Maine Sports Commission was created in February 2012 in response to the growing demand for information regarding sports events and sports-related meetings in the state of Maine. The leadership of the Maine Sports Commission includes representatives from seven of the eight tourism regions, the Maine Office of Tourism, representatives from the Bangor and Portland Convention & Visitors Bureaus, and representatives from the sports, education, and tourism industries. The seven tourism regions participating in the commission are the Maine Beaches, the Greater Portland & Casco Bay Region, the Mid-Coast Region, Western Maine's Lakes & Mountains, Aroostook County, the Kennebec River Valley, and The Maine Highlands.
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