Each year on the third Saturday of September, bicyclists descend upon MCC Central States in North Newton, participating in the annual MCC Flatlander Bicycle Ride.
Each year, the ride serves as a fundraiser for a project — this year the Sept. 21 ride will raise funds for Good-bye River Water, Hello Good Health, a project working to improve rural villages in Nigeria.
The ride is designed to provide an enjoyable bicycling experience for people at all fitness levels. The Flatlander is a benefit for Mennonite Central Committee.
The 2019 project, Good-bye River Water, Hello Good Health, benefits the rural villages in Nigeria. MCC, through its partner organization Go International Mission, seeks to reduce illnesses associated with unsafe water and poor sanitation by drilling hand pump bore holes (wells) and building latrines and handwashing stations. The latrines are for schools or community use, and are much more sturdy and complex than household/basic pit latrines. The project also provides education in good hygiene practices. The fundraising goal for this year is $10,000.
The 2018 Flatlander raised a total of $15,435 for a water project in Guatemala.
Riders are encouraged to ask friends, co-workers, etc., for contributions for the Flatlander and/or to make a personal contribution above the registration fee.
Registration for the ride is $35 for individuals and $75 for families. The family registration includes three T-shirts. Price includes lunch, map, SAG service and T-shirt.
Contributions can be brought in the morning of the ride. Gift certificates from Bicycle Pedaler for $100, $60 and $40 will be given to the riders or families who raise the three highest amounts in contributions.
All routes will start from the MCC Center. Registration will be from 7 to 8 a.m. A riders' meeting will take place at 8 a.m. Three main routes are planned, with lengths of approximately 35, 45 and 65 miles. In addition, there will be a family ride of 8 to 16 miles, according to rider discretion. SAG and lunch service ends at 3 p.m.
Each rider should bring a bicycle, helmet, extra tire tube and water bottle. Helmets are mandatory.