Mountain Charlie ride on last legs?

We’re looking for help in continuing the SVEF Mt Charlie Challenge Ride. Read about it in our local Press-Banner here:

This year, cyclists may have made the final ride through the hills of Santa Cruz County as part of the annual Mountain Charlie Challenge.

Organizers from the Scotts Valley Educational Foundation have run out of energy organizing the 100-kilometer and 50-kilometer rides that completed their seventh year in April.

“We need a whole new crew to step up,” organizer Charlotte Multer said. “We’ve said right now that unless we have a new crew, it’s not going to happen.”

April’s ride netted about $19,000 for the SVEF.

Previously, the ride had brought in between $25,000 and $30,000 each year — the largest single fundraiser for the SVEF.

The foundation makes a lump donation each year to the Scotts Valley Unified School District to support Brook Knoll and Vine Hill Elementary schools, Scotts Valley Middle School and Scotts Valley High School.

The ride helps raise money that significantly helps the district maintain one program that might be on the chopping block each year.

This year, the SVEF gave the district $32,000 to help pay for a music teacher’s salary, and the year before, a donation of $64,000 helped keep school libraries open full time, Superintendent Susan Silver said.

However, the number of organizers has ebbed from eight or 10 annually to a core group of three: Paula Twisselman, Sally Kamian and Multer.

“We’ve done it for seven years,” Multer said. “We originally did it for years like this, with bad budget shortfalls.”

The first year, with only 12 riders, the race netted $10,000. It has grown since then and annually gets between 70 and 100 riders.

But the door is not completely shut on the race’s future if volunteers step up.

Multer said she is not actively seeking volunteers to help organize the race, but if enough people are interested in taking over the organizational duties, it could still happen.

For information, e-mail [email protected].

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