LOWVELO bike ride raises money for cancer research

CHARLESTON, S.C. (September, 26, 2019) -— LOWVELO, the inaugural outdoor bike ride happening Nov. 1 and 2, offers cyclists scenic Lowcountry vistas as they enjoy one of the three featured routes. Every rider-raised dollar goes to benefit lifesaving cancer research at MUSC Hollings Cancer Center.

“This will help elevate our cancer center and MUSC to new levels of health care and change the cancer landscape in our South Carolina communities,” says Gustavo Leone, Ph.D., Hollings Cancer Center director.

A hybrid of “Lowcountry” and “velo,” the French word for bike, LOWVELO launches on Friday, Nov. 1, at Riverfront Park in North Charleston. Festivities will kick off at 3 p.m., and feature performances by longtime Americana favorites, the Blue Dogs. Comedian and cancer survivor David Lee Nelson will emcee the celebration, which also will include a traditional Lowcountry feast, along with beer and wine. Tickets for the opening ceremony are $40 for the general public and free for registered riders (excluding virtual riders) and kids ages 12 and under.

On Saturday, Nov. 2, riders will depart Riverfront Park and travel one of three scenic routes – 25, 50 or 100 miles – designed to accommodate all fitness levels. The Sunbelt 25 takes riders downtown to The Citadel and through historic Hampton Park before circling back to Riverfront Park for a finale on the banks of the Cooper River. Riders will be welcomed with complimentary barbecue from Swig & Swine.

Meanwhile, the Boeing 50 and Jerry Zucker 100 routes travel from North Charleston to the City of Charleston and over the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge. From there riders will enjoy picturesque Sullivan’s Island, Isle of Palms and the Francis Marion National Forest. Both rides will finish at the Shipyard Park finale, where riders can celebrate over a barbecue lunch from Swig & Swine.

From newbie bike riders and longtime cyclists to MUSC patients, physicians and researchers, LOWVELO is inspiring more than 600 riders to get excited for the cause of cancer research.

Take MUSC cancer patient José Peréy and his wife, Wendy, owners of Hollings Cafe. Together, they’ll ride a tandem bike for 25 miles in the name of cancer research. The funny part? Wendy doesn’t know how to ride a bike. “He’s the one pedaling,” she says. “I just want to be a part of it.”

Denis Guttridge, Ph.D., associate director of translational sciences for Hollings Cancer Center, participated in Pelotonia while at Ohio State University before joining Hollings last year. Having seen the impact of the ride on that community and cancer center, he’s glad to see MUSC Hollings Cancer Center bring the concept here. He will be riding 100 miles Nov. 2.

“It’s something that keeps building on itself,” he says of the ride’s ability to create momentum, both in raising funds for cancer research as well as tying together the community for a good cause. “You’ll see people along the sides of the road holding up their signs supporting people they know with cancer. When you’re riding and see all these people cheering you on, you just feel this amazing and empowering connection with the community. It’s this embodied experience of togetherness that really works.”

To learn more or register to ride or volunteer, go to Lowvelo.org. 


 About MUSC Health

As the clinical health system of the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC), MUSC Health is dedicated to delivering the highest quality patient care available, while training generations of competent, compassionate health care providers to serve the people of South Carolina and beyond. Comprising some 1,600 beds, more than 100 outreach sites, the MUSC College of Medicine, the physicians’ practice plan, and nearly 275 telehealth locations, MUSC Health owns and operates eight hospitals situated in Charleston, Chester, Florence, Lancaster and Marion counties. In 2019, for the fifth consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report named MUSC Health the No. 1 hospital in South Carolina. To learn more about clinical patient services, visit http://muschealth.org.

Founded in 1824, MUSC and its affiliates have collective annual budgets of $3 billion. The more than 17,000 MUSC team members include world-class faculty, physicians, specialty providers and scientists who deliver groundbreaking education, research, technology and patient care. For information on academic programs, visit musc.edu.