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Register to ride in Benzie Sunrise Rotary Club's largest fundraiser for area youth

August 10, 2021

THOMPSONVILLE, Mich. (August 10, 2021) — Whether you prefer pedaling on the pavement, gearing up on gravel or racing to a new record, the 13th annual Up North Bike Fest has the ride for you! This year’s Bike Benzie event features six different routes to fit a wide range of abilities.

“The Tour de Pie is definitely a crowd favorite,” said event chairperson Bill Kennis. “People can choose between 30, 45 and 62-mile routes, which are all very scenic and include rest stops with cherry pie and husky energy bars along the way.”

New this year, Bike Benzie is introducing the 20 and 36-mile Gonzo Gravel routes. These courses are a local favorite of cyclists with some gentle but challenging climbs as well as sandy two-tracks. If you prefer more of a team effort, there is also the 45-mile Team Time Trial race with 3-woman or 4-man teams. The winners in each division will receive a custom ceramic medal handcrafted by Corey Bechler, the art teacher at Benzie Central. Each of the races are sponsored by Five Shores Brewing, which also created a specially designed cycling jersey for early online registration.

“Our amazing sponsors are fueling momentum for our grandest event ever,” said Kennis. “We are thrilled Crystal Mountain is hosting the event for the 13th year and will help us put on a safe and healthy environment for hundreds of cyclists on August 21st.”

With a recent uptick in COVID-19 cases in Michigan, Crystal Mountain is referring back to some of its COVID-19 safety guidelines based on recommendations from the CDC and local health departments. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services recommends people who are not fully vaccinated wear a mask in crowded outdoor and indoor settings.

“Keeping our staff and guests safe and healthy on our property has always been our number one priority, especially during the pandemic,” said Crystal Mountain Chief Operating Officer John Melcher. “With more than 5 million Michiganders vaccinated, we are excited to welcome bike enthusiasts who want to stay active outdoors and help support area youth.”

Proceeds from registration fees fund a variety of youth programs, including taking ninth graders on a charter bus to visit different college campuses around the state.

Registration will remain open until the day of the event. The Tour de Pie and Gonzo Gravel is $50 per person and the Team Time Trial starts at $40 per person. Everyone is invited to come hang out at the finish line party with live music, free food, craft beer from Five Shores, maple syrup from Iron Fish Distillery - and showers! Crystal Mountain is also providing lodging discounts for participants.

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About Benzie Sunrise Rotary:

The primary mission of the Benzie Sunrise Rotary Club is to improve the lives and futures of the youth of Benzie County. The organization has strong partnership with the Benzie County Central Schools and the proceeds from this ride fund the many programs and activities that our partnership is built on for the elementary, middle, and high schools. Visit its website at for more details about the specific programs that this ride helps to fund.

About Crystal Mountain:

Established in 1956, Crystal Mountain is a family-owned, four-season resort destination located 28 miles southwest of Traverse City and a short drive from Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. The 1,500-acre resort features lodging, dining, downhill and cross-country skiing, two championship golf courses, shopping, award-winning Crystal Spa, Michigan’s only alpine slide, Peak Fitness, the Park at Water’s Edge, Michigan Legacy Art Park, weddings, a conference center and real estate options. Visit for more resort details or information about Four Seasons Club memberships.

Crystal Mountain Media Contact:

Brittney Buti, Manager of Public Relations

Cell: 269.845.1352


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