Proceeds from the Toyota of Cleveland Bike to Build will go directly to building materials for a Habitat house to be dedicated the end of May.
Habitat of Cleveland Executive Director Matt Carlson said the number of participants doubled from the first event in 2010 when 250 registered and 200 actually participated. Riders came from Indiana and Pennsylvania to ride distances from 12 to 100 miles.
“We have folks from nine different states actually participating in the ride today,” he said. “To get that type of participation is awesome to see. We’ve had a huge influx of riders in the last two weeks and it’s almost more riders than we know what to do with.”
He said he wasn’t sure how many to expect, only that they wanted to do better than last year.
“We basically doubled our numbers in riders and volunteers,” he said. “It’s exciting to see this accomplishment for us and the community.”
Robert Bradney, of Bender Realty, volunteered to work at the registration table while other real estate agents were riding bikes. He values Habitat for Humanity in Cleveland because the organization teaches people about home ownership, how to maintain a home and build equity.
“It helps bring the community closer together and improves neighborhoods,” he said.
Bradney serves on the Century Village Homeowner Association as the manager.
Bob Sain, 86, was a member of the men’s group from Broad Street United Methodist Church that chartered the local Habitat chapter in 1990. They built their first house in 1993. He led the charitable organization through construction of the first 30 houses.
“By that time we had enough income to hire full-time help,” he said. “We’ve come a long way. We’re on house number 84 right now. It has been a great program and the community has certainly been supportive.”