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eBikes at Empire State Ride

Empire State Ride is an endurance event that challenges riders over the course of 500+ miles. Some riders may want to complete that journey on an eBike. The good news is that class 1, pedal assist eBikes are allowed on the Empire State Ride route. To ensure a safe and positive ride experience, however, there are some factors you should consider.

Types of eBikes

Riders at ESR

During Empire State Ride, you will be cycling along a variety of different road types. Bike paths are included in our routes, so our permits only allow for class 1 pedal assist eBikes. All others are NOT permitted.

When selecting an eBike, make sure that it is a durable road bike, made for longer distances and is Underwriters Laboratories approved (UL label). Price is a gauge of quality. eBikes for less than $800 will not last on the ESR. Having a high-quality eBike will keep you safe on the road and prevent a wide range of mechanical issues that could hinder your seven-day adventure.

Prior to hitting the road, get plenty of training on your eBike to ensure you’re comfortable riding it, charging it and changing the battery.

Charging Your eBike

It is up to the rider to monitor their own charging progress.

On the Road  

Empire State Ride is a seven-day adventure. Each day’s route will vary with the shortest ride day being 50-60 miles and the longest day covering 100 miles. One battery/charge will likely not be sufficient to get you through the day. In some cases, riders may need two or three batteries for days with longer mileage. If you bring a second battery, you will need to carry it with you during the ride and have a plan as to when you will change it on the route.

At Rest Stops

eBikes cannot be charged at rest stops along the Empire State Ride route. 

At Camp

Charging stations will be available at camp each night during Empire State Ride. eBikes without removable battery packs are not recommended, as we cannot guarantee that our charging stations at each camp will be near the bike racks.

Riders at sunset on ESR

Glitches Along the Way

SAG and mechanics crews will be available to assist you with a flat tire, should one develop. If your eBike requires specific tools, be sure to bring them with you on your ride, and we’ll assist to the best of our ability. While our mechanics are extremely well-equipped, we may have to lean on the help of bike shops along the route to accommodate the unique needs of each bike. If your eBike requires a rare part, we will do our best to find a loaner bike so you can keep your momentum going.

Still have questions about bringing your eBike? Contact our team at empirestateride@roswellpark.org.

2023 Empire State Ride Raises $2 Million for Cancer Research

From July 22 to July 29, 2023, 276 cyclists embarked on the journey of a lifetime across New York State. Together, they raised $2 million for cancer research at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center. That’s a new fundraising record for the Empire State Ride, since the event began back in 2014.

Watch the 2023 Wrap Video!

The Journey

During the 500+ mile adventure, starting in New York City and ending in Niagara Falls, riders passed through 76 villages, towns and cities. They conquered countless obstacles, from heat and hills to storms and distance.

Riders came from 26 states (including Alaska) and the U.S. Virgin Islands with one common goal. They created unique bonds by sharing their stories and their why for taking part in #ESR23.

Every night, through evening programming, Empire State Ride road warriors learned more about the mission to end cancer and how their fundraising dollars are being put to work right now.

Want to revisit some of the best moments from your weeklong adventure? Check out the Empire State Ride Flickr album, with photos from each day.

This is an image of an Empire State Ride road warrior cycling past the American flag

“This week was one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences I’ve ever had … I rode for my dad, and seeing him and my family at the finish line made all the struggles so worthwhile. I made amazing friends and got to see so much of this incredible state.”

“That's why I really wanted to do this ride, because I wanted to do something monumental that says, ‘I got cancer, and it's not going to stop me.’ It hasn't stopped me."

“Empire State Ride means coming together once a year with a family that will continue to grow and that will raise what we need to raise to keep more research going … I encourage everybody to do at least one day of the Empire State Ride. One day can change your life.”

Join the Adventure

Be the first to know when registration opens for #ESR24 by joining our mailing list.

We look forward to seeing you on the road next summer for the 10th anniversary ride.

Save the dates:
July 20 – July 27, 2024

The Difference You Make with Empire State Ride

When you support Empire State Ride, you’re paving the way for the next generation of cancer care.

The funds raised by our riders benefit cutting-edge cancer research at America’s first cancer center dedicated to research, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center. Through regional, national and global collaboration, the funds that come to Roswell Park go into efforts that will change the way we prevent, diagnose and treat cancers of all kinds everywhere. That means with Empire State Ride, your impact is worldwide.

Check out these videos to see how your dollars are being put to work right now:

CAR T-Cell Therapy

CAR T-Cell therapy, an innovative immunotherapy treatment, originally for blood cancers, that will now expand to solid tumors, thanks to forward-thinking, patient-focused leadership at Roswell Park.

SurVaxM

SurVaxM, a therapeutic vaccine designed to help patients with a particularly aggressive form of brain cancer, glioblastoma. SurVaxM was developed at Roswell Park by Robert Fenstermaker, MD, Chair of Neurosurgery, and Michael Ciesielski, PhD, Assistant Professor of Oncology.

Response to Therapy

Response to Therapy, an innovative blood test that will change the way we treat cancer by giving doctors real-time updates on how a patient is responding to treatment. A phase 1 study, funded in part by donations, is already underway at Roswell Park.

The Road to Empire State Ride, brought to you by Port X Logistics: By the Numbers

Presented by

Solid Yellow Port X Logo

Empire State Ride has grown substantially since it began back in 2014. Adjusting to scale while keeping a tight-knit community feel is a challenge our behind-the-scenes team continues to master year after year. To give you a better picture of the scope of this seven-day adventure, here’s a breakdown of the numbers.

Sponsors:

  • Port X Logistics 
  • Destination Niagara USA
  • Batavia Downs
  • CSX
  • Windstream
  • Enterprise

In-kind sponsors:

  • Aquaphor
  • BioSteel
  • Blistex
  • Bumalicious
  • Campbell’s – Snyder’s, Lance and Goldfish
  • Chamois Butt’r
  • Fox Sports New Jersey
  • General Mills
  • LMNT
  • MSG Networks
  • Optimum TV
  • Schneps Media
  • Spectrum
  • Strong Studio
  • UP2U Recover
  • WBAB/WBLI Radio
  • WIVB Channel 4 Buffalo

“We cannot emphasize enough the immense logistical challenges that go into planning and executing a ride of this size. It takes an outstanding team of dedicated professionals to ensure that every aspect, from route planning and safety measures to accommodations and transportation, is perfectly orchestrated for a seamless experience,” said Brian Kempisty, founder of Port X Logistics.

“At Port X Logistics, we understand the importance of meticulous planning and collaboration, which is why we are constantly in awe of the exceptional team behind the Empire State Ride. Their unwavering commitment to making this event a success, year after year, is truly commendable.”

One figure that can’t be measured — the countless memories you’ll make on the road. Join the adventure and our mission to end cancer.

Your $1 donation turns into $23 in cancer research funding

There are many powerful ways to support Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center’s goal of freeing our world from the fear, pain and loss due to cancer. One of those ways is riding in or donating to the Empire State Ride. That’s because the funds raised by ESR road warriors and donors each year are put to work immediately, fueling cutting-edge cancer research for cancer patients and their caregivers.

Roswell Park has the best and brightest researchers and doctors who have come from around the world to dedicate their life to studying and treating cancer. Donations to Roswell Park through the Empire State Ride enable breakthrough cancer discoveries and bring new treatments from the bench (lab) to the bedside (patients).

We’re proud to say that for every dollar donated to cancer research, Roswell Park is now able to leverage an additional $23 from external grants toward that research. This is thanks to the support of ESR and the hard work of Roswell Park researchers.

How cancer research funding works.

Cancer research requires a lot of work, resources and investment. With the great wealth of talent among Roswell Park’s researchers and scientists, there are a lot of promising ideas brewing. Many of these discoveries are only able to move forward with the support of donations. Each year, Roswell Park scientists apply and compete for grants from the Roswell Park Alliance Foundation through the Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC). The SAC process is led by Drs. Mukund Seshadri and Kirsten Moysich, who select an internal objective group of peers to sit on the committee based on expertise and areas of research. Reviewers are asked to thoroughly evaluate and consider the scientific promise of each application. The most promising grant applications are awarded with donor-raised funds to allow scientists to continue their cancer research. This seed money is used for researchers to obtain primary research data and, in turn, apply for larger national grants. The initiatives that receive support often lead to long-term funding from national organizations and new treatments.
This photo shows a researcher in a leukemia lab conducting cancer research.

Impact of fundraising at Roswell Park.

Since 2011, the Roswell Park Alliance Foundation, with funds from the Empire State Ride and other related fundraisers, has awarded over $16 million to researchers through the Scientific Advisory Committee through 245 grants to 146 scientists. These grants have led to the publication of 167 papers, the start of at least 20 clinical trials based on homegrown science at Roswell Park and the investment of over $96 million in external grant funding. That means that for every dollar donated to cancer research, Roswell Park receives an additional $23 in external funding for cancer research. The dedication and commitment of riders, donors and volunteers is driving work in state-of-the-art labs that fuels discoveries that are changing the future of cancer.

All Things Travel

Empire State Ride is an adventure unlike any other, and getting there and back shouldn’t be an added hill to climb! You may have questions about logistics, so we’ve got you covered with everything you need to know, including added fun after the finish line.

How Do I Travel with My Bike?

You’re not the first person to ask about this! The good news is you have some options if you want to travel with your bike.

  1. Ship your bike: You can ship your bike with Bike Flights. Campus WheelWorks can unpack and rebuild your bicycle, and we will transport it to Wagner College on July 21. Bike shipping is at your own expense.
  2. Take advantage of the bicycle shuttle truck: Another option for you is utilizing the bike truck, which takes shipped and local bikes from Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center directly to the start line at Wagner College. More details are available in the ESR travel planner that is sent to you when you register.

What About Getting to and from Niagara Falls?

ESR road warriors come from all over the country. We know transportation can be a factor in your decision to join the adventure! Getting to and from Empire State Ride is your responsibility, but here are some suggestions to make it easier.

  1. Take the charter bus from Buffalo, NY. This bus leaves from Roswell Park on Saturday, July 22 and takes you to Wagner College. You’ll get there at around 3:30 p.m., in time for all the first-night activities! Cost is announced in the ESR travel planner.
    • Riders who are starting their trip from Buffalo are also welcome to drive and park their vehicles in the Roswell Park ramp for the week, free of charge.
    • Alternatively, riders can be dropped off at Wagner College or drive there and park their car for the week, free of charge.
    • ESR also offers a charter bus from Niagara Falls, NY, to Wagner College on July 30. Find further details in the ESR travel planner. 
  2. Prefer to fly? We encourage riders fly to Newark, LaGuardia or JFK airports in New York City, with ground transportation to Wagner College in time for orientation on Saturday, July 22.

If taking the train makes the most sense for you, you also have options! We recommend riders who prefer the train take Amtrack to Penn Station in New York City. Then, take the subway to the Staten Island Ferry. From there, they can ride a taxi or Uber/Lyft to Wagner College in time for orientation at Wagner College.

Extend your stay in Niagara Falls, NY!

Keep the adrenaline pumping and extend your stay on the other side of New York in Niagara Falls USA! Enjoy this bucket-list destination with the friends and family who cheered you on during your 500+ mile journey.

Niagara Falls USA offers:

View or download the Niagara Falls USA Travel Guide, or request a free printed guide delivered to you here.

Added benefits:

You can walk to the Falls from the finish line and from many of the downtown Niagara Falls hotels. You can also walk across the Rainbow Bridge to Canada if you have a passport or approved travel documents.

Pro tip:

If you are organizing a family weekend and want to choose another hotel, it’s a good idea to check your hotel’s proximity to the Falls on a map. Several hotels advertise the Falls, but may be further away and require a car or public transportation.

This is a photo of riders at the finish line in Niagara Falls after traveling from Wagner College in Staten Island.
This is a rider holding up his bike at the finish line in Niagara Falls after traveling 500+ miles for Empire State Ride

Visit the Niagara Falls USA website for travel planning information, or call 1-877 FALLS US to speak with a local expert.

If you’re already registered, check your travel planner for more information!

If you haven’t registered yet, what are you waiting for?

Allison Joseph’s passion for cycling and the cancer cause

Allison Joseph of Troy, New York is a lifelong lover of cycling. Over the years, while on her rides, she noticed something was missing.

“I didn’t see any women who looked like me. I thought about it, and I said, ‘There is no way I am the only woman of color who is interested in cycling.’ So, I set out to find my people,” said Allison.

She started the Capitol Region chapter of Black Girls Do Bike, an organization with 100 chapters worldwide.

Monica Garrison, the founder and executive director of Black Girls Do Bike, explained each chapter has naturally been drawn to different health causes.

“I think we all know that getting on the bike and cycling regularly can help stave off diseases and conditions that affect our community and people of color disproportionately,” Monica said. “It’s almost a no-brainer to want to do something to get in the fight and help these causes.”

That message resonates with Allison.

“Black Girls Do Bike is a community of women who encourage women, especially African American women and women of color, to cycle,” said Allison. “Whether it be for fun, function or fitness, we just want you to get on a bike and enjoy riding.”

Becoming an ESR Road Warrior

Allison at #ESR22

Allison has participated in other endurance cycling events and says she’s always looking for a challenge. When she found Empire State Ride, it was a perfect way to align two of her passions: cycling and the cancer cause.

“So many of my family members have been hit with cancer. I’ve watched them go through the struggle,” Allison explained. “This was my way of doing something.”

With an understanding of Roswell Park’s impact on the world of cancer research and treatment, Allison knows every dollar she raises is serving a greater mission.

“If it doesn’t help someone today, it’s definitely going to help someone tomorrow and in generations to come. It keeps the research going. Technology is constantly changing, and we need money to fund that research.”

It’s also been proven that for every dollar donated, Roswell Park can leverage an additional $13*** in new grant funding. For Allison, that’s even more reason to come back for #ESR23.

“It makes me more motivated to not only do this again but push myself and push my limits even harder to raise even more money.”

*** For years, we’ve told you that your $1 donation can turn into $13 in external funding for cancer research. Now, we’re proud to announce that your $1 donation is now creating $23 in funding. This is thanks to your incredible support and the hard work Roswell Park researchers put in every day to advance new discoveries. Read more about this change

The ESR Community

No rider at ESR is alone. Allison experienced that firsthand during #ESR22. Last year, she joined the ride about halfway through in Albany. For 2023, she will be taking part in the entire seven-day adventure.

“There is a support system that is equal to none that I see,” said Allison. “The volunteers anticipate all your needs. For example, one day, I didn’t even notice that there were some screws loose on my bike, and I turned around and a volunteer was there to fix it.”

Allison also cherishes building relationships with riders from different walks of life.

“Everyone is so friendly and helpful – the energy! I got to meet some incredible people and talk to them about their why and share my why. There are some people who are retired. There are some professionals. There are some young people, so it’s pretty incredible being exposed to all of that diversity.”

Allison at #ESR22
Allison with Terry and Maria

Getting Ready for #ESR23

Allison in Niagara Falls at the finish line

For people who might be nervous about joining the movement this year, Allison says, “Just do it!”

She encouraged utilizing Coach Charlie Livermore’s training plans customized to the ESR experience. Going into #ESR23, Allison says she plans to train longer and harder, with “attacking the hills” at the top of her agenda.

Allison hopes her involvement not only makes a difference in the mission to end cancer, but also sends a message to other women of color.

“Representation matters. For Black Girls Do Bike to be out here representing, it means a lot. It reminds people that we are out here, and black girls do indeed bike and black girls do indeed do a lot of the things that it’s typically believed we do not do.”

As she prepares to challenge herself again this summer, she’s keeping the cause close to her heart.

Roswell Park has done so much for the community. It has done so much for cancer research, and this is my way of giving back.”

Why first-time rider Justin Eveland joined the cause

The bond between a father and son is incomparable, and that’s apparent in the admiration Justin Eveland has when sharing memories of his dad. 

“The way I would describe my dad is someone who lived for today and not for tomorrow. He was always the life of the party and someone who could make you smile in your worst of times,” Justin stated proudly.

His father, Ken Eveland, worked in law enforcement for almost 40 years. Justin says he was the family organizer, always planning activities to bring people together, including an annual Buffalo Bills bus trip from their hometown of Geneva, New York.

“He had been bringing me to Buffalo Bills games ever since I was just a little guy.”

But, those games, along with other family adventures, would come to an unanticipated pause.

In 2017, Ken was diagnosed with stage IV renal cell carcinoma, a form of kidney cancer.

“What we thought was going to be an in-and-out procedure turned into a more elaborate and elongated issue for our family,” Justin explained.

By 2019, the cancer metastasized to his lung and then to his brain in 2020. Ken is still fighting today.

“For a long time, I have felt very helpless, like I can’t do anything for my dad. I can’t ease his pain,” said Justin.

Driven to make a change, Justin committed to a new challenge. This summer, he’s cycling more than 500 miles to end to cancer. 

Justin Eveland and his dad, Ken.
Ken Eveland holding a boxing glove

Becoming an ESR Road Warrior

Ron, Justin and Ken

The Empire State Ride is a week-long bike tour from New York City to Niagara Falls that raises funds to fuel cancer research at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Justin joined the movement as a first-time rider for #ESR23. With his dad in mind throughout his training, he’s prepared to push himself emotionally and physically along the way.

“I didn’t have a road bike prior to signing up for the Empire State Ride, nor have I really ever ridden probably longer than 10 miles on a bicycle at any given time,” he explained. “But this is what I’m doing to help fight against cancer and maybe one day find a cure.”

For others thinking about joining, Justin echoed the sentiment that riders are not alone.

“The support you receive from the Empire State Ride team and the Empire State Ride community is astounding. There’s a Facebook group, and there are people asking a ton of questions, with veteran riders helping new riders overcome any fear that they might have.”

 

Fundraising Made Easy

For some first-time riders, hitting the $3,500 fundraising minimum may be intimidating. However, using the tools available and the ESR team, it can be easier than expected. Justin is a great example of this.

By mid-March, four months before the ride, Justin had already raised more than $6,000 — with a personal goal of reaching $7,500.

He says utilizing social media, both Facebook and LinkedIn, has been extremely effective.

“I wanted to make it as personal as possible,” Justin added. “I think what’s worked for me is sharing stories from loved ones and the folks that I’m riding for, because, after each week, someone new would donate after reading a particular story.”

Justin leaned on the ESR Facebook group for unique fundraising ideas, and his main piece of advice is: “Don’t be afraid to ask.”

 

Family photo
Ken, JJ and Ken's wife

The Finish Line

Justin’s first Empire State Ride is fast approaching, and he’s eager to build friendships at camp and hear other people’s stories. Above all else, he’s already picturing crossing the finish line, alongside riders who share a common goal of ending cancer.

Riding for his father during ESR will be even more meaningful now that he is a dad himself. Justin has two sons: Jonathan and Bennett.

“Someday, I’m certainly looking forward to being able to share the experience with my sons when they’re old enough to understand,” said Justin. “When it’s easy to sit back and do nothing, I think they’ll be proud to know that their dad did something to make a difference.”

The Road to Empire State Ride, brought to you by Port X Logistics: Why volunteer at ESR?

Presented by

Solid Yellow Port X Logo

You don’t have to ride 500+ miles to enjoy everything that Empire State Ride has to offer. Our volunteers play a key role in the community, bringing the event to life and encouraging our road warriors along the journey. 

Some volunteers help on the road for the entire seven-day experience; others offer their assistance for a day or a few hours. Regardless of the role, each volunteer is essential to ESR.

Meet Your Volunteer Coordinator

“I would love for everybody to get to experience what the Empire State Ride truly is at its core. It’s people coming together for one cause,” said Ashley Gracie, senior volunteer coordinator. “To see that play out each day and then to hear these intimate stories that people share as their why is truly phenomenal. It really motivates you to want to do more.”

Among Ashley’s many tasks, she is responsible for building up the volunteer presence at ESR. 2022 was her first year on the ESR team, and it was also the first year of fully utilizing seven-day volunteers. They were integral to the journey from the kickoff all the way through the finish line, helping at rest stops and the campsites.

Ashley and the team also work to get people from each township involved along the way. Of the one-day volunteers, their reasons for getting involved varied. Some were riders in their own communities who wanted to learn more about ESR, others were former ESR road warriors who live in those respective areas and many were a part of organizations interested in giving back to the cause.

“If you have just a couple hours to share, I promise it’s going to be worth your while,” Ashley explained. “It’s something that stays with you, the experience itself. It’s why we have so many riders come back every year. It’s why we have volunteers come back every year.”

Photo of Ashley Gracie, senior volunteer coordinator
Photo of Ashley Gracie, senior volunteer coordinator

Hear From a Weeklong Volunteer

Janice Hetrick of Lancaster is a rider turned volunteer. She took part in ESR as a rider for the first time in 2017. Due to a knee replacement in 2022, still feeling compelled to be a part of the experience, she decided to take on a different role at ESR. Janice returned to the road as a volunteer for all seven days of the adventure. Along with her desire to give back, she brought an energy that kept the riders going.

Janice took on a variety of tasks while volunteering, from manning one of the rest stops to squirting riders with a water gun when they needed a cooldown and assisting at the HUB (Hospitality Updates and Beverages), which is the central spot for rider information. With each job, she made it fun!

“It’s captivating. It’s an uplifting experience,” Janice explained.

The experience was so impactful that Janice plans on returning as a volunteer for #ESR23.

Hear From a One-Day Volunteer

Gail Green-Anderson of New York City and her husband Rick are both one-day volunteers at ESR. Cycling is a part of the fabric of their relationship.

“My husband and I met while cycling. It was 1998, and we both went to the wrong starting point for a Five Borough Bike Club Labor Day Ride, and we spotted each other,” said Gail with a smile. “We eventually got married, and cycling is a really important part of our life.”

For ESR, Gail and Rick greeted riders as they came off the Staten Island Ferry, cheered them on and made sure they were headed in the right direction. It was the perfect way for them to get involved since they know the area well, both from living nearby and from riding their bikes all over New York City.

Gail explained seeing the riders embark on their journey was incredibly rewarding.

“What struck me were the big smiles on their faces,” said Gail. “Sometimes at the beginning of a big athletic event, people look anxious. These people did not look anxious. They knew why they were there. They had a sense of purpose. They had been prepared. They were on their way. I got to play a small role, saying, ‘Go that way!’”

For people who live in municipalities along the #ESR23 route who are considering signing up to volunteer, Gail says – “Just do it!”

She and her husband plan to help again this summer, and as she reflects on previous years, she says her volunteer experience has been worthwhile.

With tears in her eyes Gail explained, “For people who have sustained tremendous loss of loved ones to look that happy and that energetic doing something that addresses that loss – that’s pretty remarkable.”

Gail and Rick
This photo shows a volunteer holding a "mount up" sign
Two children hug their mother in front of a banner that reads We are proud of you mom

An opportunity for you

Whether you have an hour, a day or a week – you can make a difference on Empire State Ride.

There are dozens of volunteer opportunities and multiple shifts available. Tasks range from camp setup, to greeting riders, cheering participants on at the finish line and more!

See the full list of opportunities here.

By giving your time as a volunteer, you’re fueling the ESR mission to end cancer.

“That’s why I fight. That’s why I put so much passion and dedication into making the best experience possible so we can get more and more people involved,” said Ashley.

Questions about volunteering? Contact Ashley Gracie at Ashley.Gracie@RoswellPark.org.

Fundraising tips for first-time riders

Ready to become a road warrior?

When you sign up to ride with us across New York State, you’re committing to raising funds that pave the way for innovative cancer research and clinicals trials. Much like training for the 500+ mile adventure, becoming a fundraising master can also take practice.

The good news is you’re not in this alone!

Our Empire State Ride team is providing you with a wide variety of fundraising tools, including imagery ready for your social media feed, the ESR MyHub App and print materials like custom business cards. Read more about the fundraising tools available here.

As you’ll learn throughout your journey, your fellow road warriors can also be a great source of guidance. We asked registered riders in our private Empire State Riders Facebook group to share their advice for first-time fundraisers.

Rider on the road showing a sign of strength

Here’s a look at what they had to say:

  • Thomas F: “Start now by leveraging social and business cards!!!”

  • Shelley A: Start early … some will be happy to donate to your ride. Others need an incentive. If you can get a major prize, (TV, tickets to a game, etc.), then run a raffle. They love a chance to donate while having a chance to win something. Good luck!”

  • Dennis B: “Be creative – we are doing football squares, bowling. Some people are doing beer blasts. Key – be sure to tag people on Facebook when someone gives you a donation and thank them. That really helps your friends see it. Their friends see it, etc.”

  • Mark S: “A local brewery is letting me run a 50/50 during their trivia night!”

  • Steve M: “Some businesses will let you do a match event and donate a portion of proceeds to your ride. I did this twice with Chipotle. Invite friends/family on a specific night to get dinner at your local participating restaurant, and they donate 33%. Easy to do!”

  • Maria C: “My father said always just ask, 😊 You may be surprised, and I always keep my letters and cards with me. Ask everyone you know!”
  • Greg P: “March Madness contest. Get businesses to donate prizes. Then contestants make donations to ESR to get a ballot and play. We have a traveling trophy with names of winners from the previous 28 years.”

  • Chris H: “Don’t say their ‘no’ for them. If you don’t ask, then are you saying their ‘no’ for them. Don’t be shy. Don’t be discouraged by the no’s you get. But at least give them a chance to say ‘yes’ by asking.”

The back of a rider in an excelsior jersey at #ESR22
  • Marah C: “Tell everyone about the incredible event!”

  • Alan K: “You and your donors should check with their employer to see if they offer a company match for any donations made to ESR. My company will match up to $1,000 to any 501c3 charitable organization.”

  • Michelle Lynn B: “Always ask and give people the opportunity to give!”

  • Mark S: “If you do a 50/50 event, be sure to add a Venmo or QR code.

  • Jason M: “Be assertive. Lives depend on this mission.”

Want more fundraising tips? Check out last year’s advice to first-time riders.

Need more guidance?

Please contact the Empire State Ride team at 716-845-3179 or via email at empirestateride@roswellpark.org.