Annual Ride for Hope roars into action Aug. 8 to bring ovarian cancer awareness
If you hear the roar of motorcycles in Schaumburg Aug. 8, it's the annual Ride for Hope bringing a little noise to help fight the silent killer: ovarian cancer.
JuliAnne Scully, 55, of Schaumburg is a 36-year ovarian cancer survivor. To mark her 25th year of being cancer-free, she bought her first motorcycle. By 2015, she was organizing the first motorcycle ride and celebration.
That first ride started out with 72 bikes. By 2018, they had just over 500 motorcycles. And they are expecting quite a turnout this year after canceling the 2020 event because of the pandemic.
Over the years, Ride for Hope has donated more than $100,000 to the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition, and more than $45,000 to individuals fighting ovarian cancer.
This year's 65-mile trek takes place Sunday, Aug. 8, at Wintrust Field in Schaumburg, both the start and finish points.
Scully talks more about the event and who it benefits.
Q: What is the Ride for Hope? Give a brief overview of the event and who you serve.
A: Ride for Hope is a 501(c)(3) charity that raises awareness about the signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer and raises money to help women who are battling ovarian cancer with financial setbacks.
We are also partnered with the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition to support their efforts of sharing awareness and signs and symptoms across the country.
Q: What are the programs your fundraiser helps?
A: We have fundraisers throughout the year, like Restaurant Nights Out (RNO), girls nights out and Facebook fundraisers.
Our sixth annual Ride for Hope is Sunday, Aug. 8. Our recipient this year is a resident of West Chicago who is battling ovarian cancer for the second time. She just turned 40 in July. Her youngest daughter is also fighting a rare blood disease. Money raised this year will help this family.
Many volunteers and businesses have donated time, money and energy to make this year's event a success. It is truly incredible to see how everything is turning out for this year's event after we all had a bad year in 2020. This truly is our "comeback" year, only made possible by our volunteers' help and selflessness.
Q: Tell us about the annual Ride for Hope.
A: This year's event, the sixth annual Ride for Hope, is Sunday, Aug. 8, at Wintrust Field, 1999 S. Springinsguth Road, Schaumburg. You don't have to ride a motorcycle to attend.
Motorcycles take off -- or "kickstands up" -- at 10 a.m. Registration opens at 8 a.m. Everyone is invited to attend the after party, which takes place from 12:30 to 4 p.m. Huge thanks to Wintrust Field for donating the venue.
Our after party will have silent auction items, a box raffle and a 50/50. We will also have our teal marketplace to shop for ride shirts and more, as well as our teal tent, where survivors can sign our 8-foot teal ribbon. Did you know TEAL stands for Take Early Action & Live?
Our food this year is from Fat Rosie's, Lou Malnati's, Firehouse Dogs/Vienna and Franco's Cucina. There will also be a cash bar.
We will have great music from DJ Diamond Entertainment. A $30 donation gets you food, entertainment and so much more.
For details, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit rideforhopeoca2021.eventbrite.com to register for this event, or register and pay on-site.
You can also register Tuesdays through Saturdays until Aug. 5 at JuliAnne's Salon & Spa, 544 S. Roselle Road, Schaumburg.
The sixth annual ride T-shirts are available for $15; tank tops are $20.
Q: What else would like readers to know?
A: Statistics from the American Cancer Society show:
• In 2021, it is estimated that 21,410 cases of ovarian cancer will be diagnosed; of those diagnosed, 13,770 women are expected to die.
• The risk of a woman getting ovarian cancer is about 1 in 78 in her lifetime.
• Ovarian cancer ranks fifth in cancer deaths among women and causes more deaths than any other gynecological cancer.
• The five-year survival rate is over 90% when ovarian cancer is diagnosed and treated in its earliest stages.
• Only 20% of all cases are found early, meaning in stage I or II; if the cancer is caught in stage III or higher, the survival rate can be as low as 28%.
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Sixth annual Ride for Hope
What: Motorcycle ride to raise funds for ovarian cancer
When: Sunday, Aug. 8. Registration starts at 8 a.m.; kickstands up at 10 a.m.; after party from 12:30 to 4 p.m.
Where: Wintrust Field, 1999 S. Springinsguth Road, Schaumburg
Cost: $30 donation includes food, entertainment and more; $20 for kids younger than 10
Register: rideforhopeoca2021.eventbrite.com; register and pay on-site or register Tuesdays through Saturdays until Aug. 5 at JuliAnne's Salon & Spa, 544 S. Roselle Road in Schaumburg
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Know the signs of ovarian cancer
Because there are no tests, knowing the signs and symptoms are most important:
• Feeling the need to urinate urgently or often
• Trouble eating or feeling full quickly
• Pelvic or abdominal pain
• Back pain
• Upset stomach or heartburn
• Constipation or menstrual changes
• Pain during sex
To learn more, visit www.ovarian.org.
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Ride for Hope recipient says founder, volunteers are 'bundles of energy and beacons of light'
By JoAnn Hardison
Round Lake Beach
"The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away."
As one of two recipients from the 2018 Ride For Hope, I was blessed to receive a portion of the proceeds, but their inspirational impact extended far beyond that.
The friendship, support, love, kindness, and encouragement from the organizers and volunteers made a lasting impression, and helped carry me to the finish line of my treatments that year.
While I will never be able to pay it back, I strive to pay it forward.
From the moment my friend Woody nominated me, my life changed. I was recovering physically at the time from my hysterectomy, but still coming to terms mentally with the shock of my ovarian cancer diagnosis, and navigating the fear and anxiety of my impending treatments and the harrowing statistics.
JuliAnne called to learn more about me and my situation, and her spirit and energy were an uplifting and empowering boost.
A few days later, when she informed me I was selected, my mind eased and my heart glowed.
I quickly learned after meeting them that the founder and volunteers are all bundles of energy and beacons of light. Their smiling faces, their hugs, their encouraging words, and their enthusiasm are astounding!
I marvel at their monumental efforts to rally sponsors and donations, to raise money to raise awareness of ovarian cancer, and to support the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition and women who are battling the disease.
The Ride For Hope introduced me to many wonderful Teal Warrior women who are forever friends, along with dedicated members of the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition.
My office is located on a highway, and now every time I hear a motorcycle rumble by, my heart skips a beat and I smile. I will enjoy the fun for years to come, and contribute my time to the cause.
Ride for Hope, I'm a whole lot better on account of you!
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Poems by JoAnn Hardison
"My cancer battle barely begun
Scary to face but can be won
Love and support will get us by
Give us strength and help us fly
Thanks to you my worries are less
I'm going in with hope for the best
Thanks to you my spirits soar
I can't wait til engines roar!"
-- JoAnn Hardison, April 2018
"Let me hear your engines roar!
Let them make the spirits soar!"
-- JoAnn Hardison, February 2019