On Saturday September 7, from 7am-2pm, the Sourland Conservancy will host the 8th Annual Sourland Spectacular. All rides begin and end at the Otto Kaufman Center at 356 Skillman Road, Skillman, NJ. Proceeds will help to preserve and protect the ecological and historic resources of the Sourland Mountain.
The “Five Mile Almost Flat Family Fun Ride” has been a big hit with riders who want to have fun and support the cause, but aren’t ready to tackle the more challenging routes. Serious cyclists from all around the tristate area will challenge themselves on one of four Sourland region routes: 25.6miles, 35.6 miles, 50.3 miles or 62.6 miles. The longest of these, the Metric Century, includes a total of 3,646 feet of climbing.
Parking will be available at the Montgomery High School. Riders will choose their own start time between 7am and 10am. Small World Coffee (Princeton) and Bagel Barn and Deli (Montgomery) will provide coffee and bagels at the registration tent.Participants who buy advance tickets online will also receive a colorful tubular bandana. Riders will follow cue sheets that are available online now at www.sourlandspectacular.com/routes and at the event’s registration tent. Temporary arrows will be affixed to the roads, marking every turn. Each route is marked using a different colored arrow. Riders should choose a start time that will allow them to finish between 11am and 1pm.
Proceeds from the Sourland Spectacular will support the Sourland Conservancy’s mission to protect, promote and preserve the unique character of the Sourland Mountain region. The 90-square-mile Sourland region is home to the largest contiguous forest in Central New Jersey. It encompasses a complex ecosystem of forest, wetlands and grasslands, and is home to an incredibly rich diversity of animal and plant species, many rare or endangered. The forest is especially important as a breeding area for migratory songbirds, particularly those who nest only in large wooded areas.
At lunch, Brick Farm Market of Hopewell will offer two options: Turkey Burger with Romesco Sauce, pickled vegetable relish & manchego; or a local pasture-raised Berkshire Beer Bratwurst, a mild sausage, accentuated with beer from Troon Brewing in Hopewell and the Brick Farm Market’s special Coffee Mustard Relish. Both sandwiches will be served with a house baked roll plus a side of coleslaw. Also at lunch, New World Pizza will be preparing a variety of pizzas on site in their truck-mounted wood-burning oven. Dessert, of course, is the Sourland Spectacular’s signature brownie sundae, featuring bent spoon ice cream, home-made brownies and their special Sourland chocolate sauce.
Rest stops will offer all-natural peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, pretzels and a variety of fresh fruit, among other snacks. Lunch, snacks and SAG (Support And Gear) services are included in the registration fee. Sourland Cycles’ friendly staff will be on hand at the Otto Kaufman Center to help with rider questions and mechanical issues and pump tires. In addition, Sourland Cycles will be providing SAG (support and gear) services for the event. If a rider cannot complete the route for any reason, he or she can call the number on the cue sheet, and a volunteer will bring tools and supplies for minor repairs. If needed, the SAG volunteer will bring the cyclist and bike back to the Otto Kaufman Center. After the ride, Sourland Cycles will have their popular electric bikes on hand, as well as some of the new road bikes for men and women from Giant and Specialized.
The event will also host a bike drive from 7am-2pm. Donations of used bicycles in all conditions, parts, and accessories will be given to the Trenton Boys & Girls Club Bike Exchange, a volunteer organization that refurbishes used bikes and sells them at modest prices at its Ewing location. All proceeds from the bike drive will benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Mercer County. All are welcome to participate in the bike drive.
“The Sourland Spectacular offers riders of all ages a wonderful opportunity to come together and enjoy the beauty of the Sourland forests, farms, and meadows,” Sourland Conservancy Board President, Dante DiPirro said. “The board and staff would like to thank the riders for helping to preserve and protect the Mountain.” Proceeds from the event will be used to fund the Conservancy’s stewardship, education, advocacy initiatives.
Event registration is open now: Adult $50; Children 8-16 years $25; Children under 8, Free. Volunteers are needed. Visit www. tiny.cc/SCSpectacular2019 to sign up. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit the event website at www.sourlandspectacular.com or call the Sourland Conservancy’s office at 609-309-5155.