By Chelsea McLellan
Manager, Business Development, United Way East Ontario
On Saturday, September 21, United Way East Ontario had 398 cyclists make a trek to an incredible festival.
Thanks to their participation, the generosity of their supporters and our event sponsors, we were able to raise a record-breaking $71,538 to provide vulnerable youth with opportunities to build a brighter future. This means that United Way can continue to invest in programs and initiatives that get at the root of youth homelessness in our region and create long-term solutions that end it for good.
This not only shuts the door to chronic adult homelessness—it saves lives.
Youth homelessness is a chronic issue that knows no boundaries. It doesn’t start and stop at community borders. Youth experiencing homelessness in Ottawa, Cornwall and Montreal have similarities, but their experiences are also uniquely different and challenging.
This year, cyclists departed from Cornwall, Ottawa, Bourget and Montreal—all taking different routes but joining one another at the annual Beau’s Oktoberfest in Vankleek Hill, to celebrate the great work they did to fundraise in support of the vulnerable youth in each of their communities.
We’re excited to have set a new record, but what was the most rewarding is to have witnessed a group of people coming together from across Eastern Ontario, Quebec and even the United States, to show the love they have for their community and a local, family-run business: Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company.
Every year, the Beau’s Oktoberfest Charity Bike Ride grows in popularity and participants. Since 2015, the event has doubled in size and has introduced new routes since its inception.
The unique format of the Ride—different locations departing at different times, cycling different distances and ending at a festival—is unlike any other.
This year, we were invited to share what makes the Charity Bike Ride so great with Dahlia Hurtz on Newstalk 580 CFRA’s The Goods.
The pieces that make this event unique also require detailed planning, teamwork and coordination. Dedicated volunteers from Beau’s (Vankleek Hill, ON.), Bike Centric (Cornwall ON.), Cycles Campus (Montreal QC.) and Kunstadt Sports (Ottawa, ON.) all give hours of their time to ensure the success and safety of the ride.
The enthusiasm that these organizations bring makes me proud to work on this event each year.
Beau’s Brewing Co. is an incredible partner for United Way. Not only has the company been awarded the #1 spot for local craft breweries in the Ottawa Business Journal’s Book of Lists for the fourth year in a row, but its contributions to the community extend far beyond the work of the brewery and its annual Oktoberfest. Beau’s Brewing Co. provides a platform to raise funds for important causes throughout our region, including United Way East Ontario’s work to end youth homelessness.
Our causes don’t have boundaries and neither do we.
The Beau’s Oktoberfest Charity Bike Ride is an event that brings together people from different provinces and communities. No matter the distance between our participants and partners, we successfully come together, united by a common cause, to support vulnerable youth in our respective communities.
It’s getting bigger every year; we’ll hope you join us in having an impact!
Are you interested in riding with us next year? Fill in the form below and we’ll add you to our email list for Beau’s Ride 2020!