Back in October, I appeared to leave the committee meeting with a small blue folder, containing 'everything I need to know about organising the Bob Clift Memorial Cheshire Cycle Way Rides'. Apparently.
No pressure, venues were booked for next year and apart from galvanizing volunteers later in the year, I did not need to do much until next Spring.
Of course, the months do fly by. I met with a previous organiser, and gathered lots of tips and - more importantly - word and excel documents which will make life easier. I helped out with the Spring 50, which also gave me an opportunity to play with the excel sheet Janet uses for her entries, and how she managed on-line entries. An email or four to 'Entry Central', and that was set to go. I set up a facebook page too, to keep people posted with developments.
I asked for budding artists to design a poster, and certificates - and had a wonderful poster by Rick, and delightful hand drawn images for two certificates. With help from my daughter we were able to put the words and Mike (our president's) signature on.
Through May and into June I had daily emails about who has entered, and a weekly statement. People paid direct online, so life was easy and quite exciting as the numbers crept up to and then overtook previous year entry numbers.
John and a few others had been out for me and checked route and directions, and took some photos. I advertised in local 'talkabout' publication, but can't afford a three page spread like the company from Bath who decided to hold a 'Cycle Chester' event the day before. There are so many cycle events around these and in the summer months especially. It was a good job I had advertised as the key holder for Waverton Village Hall did not have our event in the book! After an apologetic phone call this was remedied and fortunately the hall was available.
In the week before Nicky and I drew up a shopping list for refreshments and snack bars, and I sent her off to Bookers. After the closing date I had more wanting to enter, people who thought they had entered and lots of advice about the route, and people who had 'redone' the route. I think the problem sits with Garmins and other gadgets and how they download a .gpx file. Technology is great - but can be a hindrance!
My husband and daughter offered the assistance of taking the camper van and our gazebo to Hassell Green and a few days before the doggy benefited from an early evening walk so I could show my husband where to park.
I stuck to the tried and tested formula, using same venues and helpers, and on the day it all fell into place wonderfully. There were small hiccups, the computer froze, Nicky kept me supplied with coffee's. The 100 mile riders arrived, and set off. The 50 mile riders arrived and set off. One 100 mile rider returned after 50 miles, to meet his wife and went home (by choice). A couple of minor mishaps and only two did not make it back. The weather stopped being nice and came in wet in the afternoon, but overall everyone seemed to enjoy the day.
Some photos from the day -
At the end of the day, the youngest rider is presented with the Jim Skelding Trophy, this year Ben (18) achieved this.
I then took it off him to get it engraved with his name and year.
Till next year!