The 8th Annual Tour des Chutes on July 14, 2012 included 1,400 registered participants, a 40% increase from 2011, and raised $100,000 for St. Charles Cancer Center/Survivorship Programs and LiveStrong’s programs in cancer research.

The Tour des Chutes is not a bike race. It is a celebration, an event to celebrate life, cancer survivorship and a chance to reflect on the too many who have passed on from cancer. It offers many meanings for each participant. The Tour des Chutes featured 100, 75, 50, 25 and 7-mile routes. Participants ranged in age from 2 and our oldest was 93.

This year, founder Gary Bonacker, an avid cyclist, co-owner of Sunnyside Sports and brain cancer patient, was unable to attend the event because he was hospitalized just days before with recurring seizures, a symptom of the tumor that triggered him to develop Tour des Chutes. Bonacker is home and gaining strength daily with physical therapy and looking forward to building a new bike for himself. Gary states, “I was terribly sad to miss the event because of the seizures that started right at that time. It has been a challenging recovery. I am very happy Tour des Chutes was a successful event and we are able to help our local cancer survivorship programs.”

The 2012 Tour des Chutes fundraising event raised $100,000 for St. Charles Cancer Center/Survivorship Programs and LiveStrong’s programs in cancer research. These funds will be distributed amongst beneficiaries to reflect Bonacker’s and the Tour des Chutes Board’s primary commitment of assisting our local programs. Tour organizers will announce the donation allocations at the DEFEAT Cancer group meeting on October 9th. DEFEAT Cancer is a local cancer survivorship program that serves to empower cancer survivors and their caregivers and is one of the beneficiaries of the funds.

The 9th Annual Tour des Chutes is scheduled for July 13th, 2013. Place it on your calendar now. Registration will open March 1. Visit http://tourdeschutes.org/ for more information and to register.