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Tour de Cure goes virtual

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — This year’s Tour de Cure will be held virtually this Saturday, October 3 beginning at 8 a.m.

Bob Russell, the American Diabetes Association Upstate NY Executive Director, discussed the Tour de Cure Monday during News 8 at Sunrise.

“We’re going to make it as close to a normal Tour day as possible,” Russell said. “So we’re going to have people checking in – instead of on location – this year we’re doing it through our Facebook page, which is Facebook: Rochester Tour de Cure. People will be able to check in. We’ll be able to have our mission moments like we normally do, help get them warmed up before they go off for their activity, have a national anthem, and then we’re going to send people on their way to do the activity of their choice – whether they want to ride, run, walk, have a little soccer game in the backyard – anything that shows that they’re keeping active and being able to take care of their health.”

Russell said after people wrap up their activity they’ll be encouraged to return to the Tour de Cure Facebook page. “The big thing about Tour is it’s about the community that’s built, so we’re trying to bring people back. We’ll have interviews with participants, with some of our Red Riders and our Red Striders – people who are living with diabetes that participate, and really being able to share those mission moments to show them what their fundraising has helped to accomplish this year helping people living with diabetes.”

The Tour de Cure is a fundraiser. Go to diabetes.org/RochesterTour to sign up. “There’s no registration fee. There’s no minimum fundraising. It’s really about, again, getting people to be active. But if people do want to fundraise it helps the mission to help 34 million people who are living with diabetes. Obviously, with COVID this year, it’s been a little different. Some of our participants have gotten very creative in their fundraising. We have one who has made masks and for people who have made a donation, she’s provided them with masks. We have another who has put together his own cookbook with diabetes-friendly recipes that he uses to control his diabetes. So I think people have really learned a way to get creative this year.”

Four-thousand people are diagnosed with diabetes each day. The Tour de Cure seeks to lower that number. “First and foremost, it’s part of our mission,” said Russell. “It’s to be able to someday find a cure for diabetes. But it’s also to help support research, so things like technology that makes living with diabetes much easier for people – whether it’s insulin pumps, continuous glucose monitors – but also Camp Aspire which is our two-week children’s camp for kids with Type 1 diabetes we run during the summer. These are just ways that we can help to show support and bring people together. For someone like myself who’s been living with diabetes for the last 32 years it’s great to know that you’re not alone and I think that’s – at the end of the day – what we’re really trying to do, is connect people who are living with this disease.”

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