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erin

July 31st, 2018

Classic Courage: Pedaling Through the Mountains to Support Courageous Kids

Erin Pinkham, MBA, MSF | Finance Director

Last week, Open Sky Finance Director, Erin Pinkham pedaled more than 100 miles up and down mountain passes (roughly 7,500 feet of elevation gain) in the Courage Classic bicycle tour to raise money for local families in need. Open Sky was proud to sponsor her team and the Courage Classic event. Learn more about the event in this Q&A with Erin!

Q: What is the Courage Classic?

A: The Courage Classic bicycle tour is a fundraiser for Children’s Hospital Colorado in Denver. My team, the Durango Derailers, raises money specifically for local kids and their families from our Southwest Colorado and Northwest New Mexico area. This money helps to alleviate the burden of travel and accommodation costs for local families seeking treatment at the hospital.

On July 21 and 22, the 60 Durango Derailers teammates rode alongside thousands of others, all in the name of allowing kids the opportunity to receive the medical care they deserve. We topped mountain passes and cruised back down, spent time with family and teammates, celebrated kids and their incredible achievements, and ultimately raised lots of money for the kids and their families who need our help. It was a humbling weekend filled with smiles, laughter, camaraderie, tears of compassion and joy, heart, family, and COURAGE. Another one for the books!

 

Q: What inspired you to become involved?

A: This was my second year being on this team and I can’t articulate what it has done for me, bringing tremendous friendship, heart, soul, and purpose. On top of that, I personally know a few of these kids who have benefited from this team and our local fund, and they truly are some of the most courageous and amazing humans I know.

While these 2,000+ cyclists (supported by 300 volunteers and countless donors!) needed lots of grit to ride across the surrounding mountain passes over two days, it’s the kids that have inspired this event in the first place. These same kids have also shown us what courage really means. It means going to the doctors (again…) even when they don’t want to; it means facing their fears over and over again; it quite literally means fighting for their lives.

 

Q: How is Open Sky supporting this event?

A: Open Sky is a sponsor of Durango Derailers and the Courage Classic and I can’t tell you how much that means to me. It shows true commitment to our local community. The sponsorship demonstrates the company’s passion to help youth and families as they pursue health and wholeness. Having Open Sky’s support is also an encouragement to me as I ride, knowing we’re working toward these goals together.

 

Q: What can others do to support?

A: Though we’ve conquered the mountain passes and this year’s ride is complete, the fundraiser is not over! In 2017, the $64,000 we raised ran out (with distributions to local families) within the first four months of the year. The need is high! While I’ve surpassed my personal goal of raising $6,000, the Durango Derailers team is just barely over our $50,000 fundraising goal. Visit my Courage Classic fundraising page to donate, learn more about the tour, and become aware of the amazing efforts to support our local community!

I also invite you to consider joining the Courage Classic event in 2019! For more information about our team, joining as a rider, the fund, or the event, please visitwww.durangoderailers.com or www.couragetours.com.

On behalf of the Durango Derailers and the community families that we support, thank you!

(Photos c/o Life Up High Photography)

erin

July 31st, 2018

Erin Pinkham, MBA, MSF | Finance Director