Cyclists gathered on Saturday to ride a special path while raising money for a couple of organizations.
Over $13,000 came together with the Peace Trek in support of Eden Foundation and Mennonite Heritage Village.
Riders pedaled their way along the historic Peace Trail; a route that resembles what the first Mennonites took to settle in southeastern Manitoba.
The Peace Trail was the idea of retired University of Manitoba professor Glen Klassen, a Steinbach resident, and was championed by the EastMenn Historical Committee. Beginning at the confluence of the Red and Rat Rivers known as Mennonite Landing, the trail follows rural roads, country paths and the Tourond Creek as it winds its way to Steinbach and the Dirk Willems Peace Garden at the Heritage Village.
Patrick Friesen was one of participants who was excited about getting on his bicycle and pedaling for a good cause.
“For me, riding has been a key aspect of my own mental health journey, but realizing that for some people riding isn't enough,” he said. “And even for myself, there have been times when you need professional help. You need people to be able to come alongside and give you that support no matter what the crisis is, or whether your family is going through crisis.”
When cyclists arrived at the Peace Garden, a special ceremony took place.
Werner Dueck was acknowledged as the top fundraiser for the event, and he received a Trek Marlin 6 Mountain Bike donated by Steinbach Source for Sports.
Jayme Giesbrecht says the money raised will be directed to supporting mental health services in the Steinbach community through the Eden Foundation. Funds from this event will also be used to pay for continued operations and events at Mennonite Heritage Village.
-With files from Michelle Sawatzky, Corny Rempel
(Photo credit for all images: Nathan Dyck)
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