ITHACA — The 21st annual “AIDS Ride for Life” is the Southern Tier AIDS Program’s largest fundraiser, attracting 400-plus riders from more than 20 states in the USA, Canada and other countries.

This year’s event will begin on Friday, September 6 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., with a Packet Pick Up and Health & Fitness Expo — all open to the public. On Saturday, September 7, will be The AIDS Ride for Life, running from 6 a.m. through 9 p.m., at Stewart Park in Ithaca, and continuing around Cayuga Lake.

“This ride around Cayuga Lake delivers a life-changing experience for many of participants from all back-grounds and fitness levels. Cyclists and volunteers are united by a common desire to do something altruistic. Whether you are a first time rider or a seasoned veteran, we want you with us at the 21st Annual AIDS Ride for Life,” a press release said.

STAP is serving record numbers along with caring for clients who have HIV/AIDS — which is still an epidemic. The rise of opioid use has increased the demand for our Opioid Overdose Prevention Program. Last year, over 365 lives were saved with Narcan kits distributed by STAP staff. The money raised helps close funding gaps within these programs and others.

Various routes are available for Riders — 14, 25, 42, 90 and 102 miles, finishing via the Black Diamond Trail. Sign up now, or for more details about the Ride: aidsrideforlife.org/riders.

Cynthia Rotella, Event Coordinator for the Ride, says “The ride is a ‘Fun Is Mandatory event!’ We want cyclists, group riders, and indoor cyclists to join us! This Ride provides much needed resources to help to fill in funding gaps within some of STAP’s program and services that include HIV preven-tion, and opioid overdose prevention.”

The event is looking for volunteers to assist with events both Friday and Saturday, with duties as various as setup, lunch handout, road marshals and more.

“We are flexible in how people can donate their time and energy to the Ride for Life. All volunteers receive and event t-shirt, a ticket to the event dinner at Stewart Park catered by Ithaca Bakery, and free ice cream at Cass Park. Would you please respond and let me know is if this is something you are interested in helping out,” a press release stated.

The registration for volunteers is below.

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