At 8:30 a.m. sharp at the corner of Cherry and Missouri streets in Historic Downtown Helena, the seventh annual Tour da Delta will officially get underway.
According to Kelly King, one of the coordinators of the event, there will be four routes this year – a 14-mile ride, a 30-mile course and 62- and 100-mile routes.
“The 14-mile route is mostly flat and will be guided by members of the Tour da Delta Committee,” stated King. “The 30-mile route is somewhat hilly and takes you through the St. Francis National Forest. The 62-mile route is like the 30-mile route but it also ventures out to Rondo and Oneida. The first 40 miles of the 100-mile route are in Mississippi.”
The Tour da Delta is held each year in memory of Tom Kinnebrew, former Helena Regional Medical Center administrator.
“Tom loved riding and he was on a mission to introduce cycling to the Delta,” commented King. “We are very excited to have Ann Kinnebrew, his wife, and Allison, his daughter, participating in the ride for the first time this year.”
The Tour da Delta is a community ride. King said it would not be possible without its generous sponsors. They include: the Arkansas Rice Council, the Helena-West Helena Advertising & Promotions Commission, H&M Lumber Co., Helena Regional Medical Center, Hickory Hill Pharmacy, King Farms, Something Special, UAMS East and West Hornor Toyota.
The Coahoma County, Mississippi Sheriff's Department, Girl Scout Troops 1036 and 1115, HRMC, Southern Bancorp, the Helena-West Helena Police Department and Younglife of Phillips County oversee registration, rest stops and route safety.
A portion of the proceeds of the ride, said King, will go to Girl Scout Troops 1036 and 1115.
Participants can register for the ride at www.bikereg.com until Thursday night. More information about the Tour da Delta can be found at www.tourdadelta.net.
On site registration will take place at the Wild Hog Saloon 4 to 6 p.m. Friday and beginning at 7:30 a.m. Saturday.
A barbecue lunch will be served at the end of the ride added King.