The Lebanon YMCA out-rode 384 competing YMCA branches across three countries, placing first in mileage for the 2020 “Rally for the Y” fundraiser.

For the last two weeks of the month-long competition hosted by stationary bike company Expresso, the Lebanon YMCA led the pack for most miles ridden, “gaining almost 100 miles a night,” according to Lebanon YMCA Director of Operations Darin Pickles. They maintained their lead and ultimately placed first in overall mileage with 16,234 miles ridden out by eighty-nine participants.

Lebanon YMCA also raised $7,737.84, placing eighth for total money raised through pledges and money from Expresso (which donates ten cents for every mile). The entire competition raised $307,482.58 across all individual YMCAs, including branches in Canada and Australia.

The Lebanon participants worked especially hard for their victory, riding out every mile on only four Expresso bikes. “The other nine teams in the top ten had six bikes to our four and more than double the riders per team,” Pickles explained.

A full line of riders on the four Expresso bikes that the competition is logged on. (Lebanon YMCA)

Three Lebanon riders finished in the top ten for mileage worldwide: Larry Stegal (fourth with 1,432 miles), Tod Dissinger (seventh with 1,277), and Michael Groff (eighth with 1,207). Additionally, Jane Kristovensky tied for fourth place in the Women’s division (1,001 miles), and Ethan Arnold and Indy Hawryluk placed high in the 20 and Under category (eleventh and twelfth, respectively). Carolyn Haskell raised the most of any individual Lebanon rider ($1,483), with Phil Tipton ($1,021) and Jim Smith ($639) following.

2020 is the fourth year that Lebanon has participated in the event. In 2019, Lebanon placed third in mileage and eleventh in money raised.

In an email to LebTown, Pickles thanked the participants. “I would really like to express my gratitude to everyone who rode or supported a rider. Considering we were outnumbered […] and out-biked, our team showed tremendous heart and determination.”

If you’re inspired to take up a similar challenge, the Lebanon YMCA will take part in another Expresso event, “Y Madness,” in October. Check out the Expresso team page for the Lebanon YMCA here.

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Josh Groh is a Cornwall native and writer who began reporting for LebTown in 2019. He continued to regularly contribute to LebTown while earning a degree in environmental science at Lebanon Valley College, graduating in 2021. Since then, he has lead conservation crews in Colorado and taken on additional...


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