Day 9 Danville VA

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On Day 9 of this incredible journey we woke up in a quiet Crewe, VA at the Comfort Inn, which was actually pretty comfy. Our game plan for the day was to just ride as far down Tobacco Heritage Road and Hwy 360 as our bodies would allow. I don’t think any of us actually thought we would make the entire 90 miles to Danville, VA but we did! Our bikes and bodies must be getting stronger! We just need our minds to stay strong.

Our morning was full of back roads and country homes still sleeping. I think we saw more dogs on the road than cars. They like chasing us and I’m pretty sure one of us yelped out in terror as a German Shepard got off the porch to say hello.

After an easy 22 miles we decided to stop for some lunch at noon in Keysville, VA. We stumbled upon a Cajun restaurant called Badeaux’s with the most friendly staff. Our waitress was so excited to hear about our journey that she called the local paper. Within the hour we were eating fried alligator and getting interviewed by The Southside Messenger. It didn’t really feel like an interview but a two way conversation as the waitress Amanda at her lunch at the bar with us and Noel came in with a camera and notepad. We told Noel that he should be interviewing Amanda our waitress who used to be a firefighter and tow truck driver. She now delivers mail, works in the restaurant, goes to welding school and is a single mother of two. Now that’s pretty incredible!

I shared my story with Noel about getting introduced to this whole soccer for social change and development world. The short version started with seeing the Kicking It documentary in 2010, raising money to volunteer at the 2011 Paris Homeless World Cup, being so inspired by the experience to quit my job of 4 years upon returning to Arkansas, moving to New York on a leap of faith with two bags and the hopes of working for Street Soccer USA. He said that he was so glad I mentioned the leap of faith because he is a builder but got his job as a reporter by responding to an ad in the paper looking for freelance reporter and he is now looking to move up and run the new office one town over!

I feel like this trip is a result of seeing opportunity and taking it. Sometimes you have to take a risk or try something out of your comfort zone and daily routine in order to grow and discover things about yourself you never knew where possible.

For most of our Street Soccer USA players that leap of faith can mean just coming to that first practice and trying it out. As a long-time lover of this beautiful game I feel it is a time and space to relax and relieve stress. I love sharing this experience and creating it for others who would otherwise be sitting in their room alone with the same worries that were running through their head the day before and the before that and the day before that.

I hope that someone, somewhere out there reading this has been encouraged by our journey to step out of their daily routine and do something to help someone or maybe even themselves. If you feel something inside of you pulling toward something or someone I suggest you see what it’s all about. You never know what’s at the end of that road.

Speaking of, we literally don’t know what’s ahead of us today. We have 150 miles between Danville, VA and Charlotte, NC. I hope NC is flatter than VA but if it’s half as beautiful then it will be alright in my book.

Day 10. 580 miles. Mount up!

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The Adventure Begins Sept 2nd

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Can’t believe September is almost here! It’s been an incredible summer full of:

So it’s going to be tough to leave this wonderful city behind for two whole months! I truly believe that it is the greatest city there ever was and that the work I get to do on a daily basis is my life calling. I am excited to share this passion for Street Soccer USA with others and be inspired by all the beauty the rest of the country has to offer. Here’s how you can help:

  1. Check out our Path and email BikeCruisade@gmail.com if you know someone we should connect with.
  2. Like us on Facebook and Join This Event to receive SOS messages for food, shelter and moral support.
  3. Follow us on Instagram for scenic photos, special playlists curated by the music industry’s finest and subtle product placement.
  4. Donate to our Food and Flat Tire Fund and we will share a meal with someone in need when we can.
  5. Donate to Street Soccer USA and we will continue to use soccer to end homelessness by transferring job and life skills to homeless youth and adults during weekly practices, games and off the field support.

We ride out from Times Square at the same exact location that our Street Soccer USA Cup was held between 42 and 43 on Broadway at 8:00am Tuesday, September 2nd. Come say bye! 

Meet Cruisader Shane

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Meet Shane Shack! This guy is one of a kind and just as crazy, if not more, than me. Shane volunteered one day about a month ago with Street Soccer USA‘s youth program in East NY, Brooklyn. On our train ride home the Bike Cruisade came up for the first time. He immediately told me he was on board and that he can’t hear amazing opportunities like that and pass them up.

He has been dedicated in his training by riding his fixed gear bike almost 30 miles a day. He is already getting his friends and family excited about his journey. This Monday we met up at Randall’s Island with three of his very talented friends to film a short, black & white silent film styled promo video for the Bike Cruisade. Visit the Facebook page here for a full album and stay tuned for the video, we are editing it now!

Age:  32.

Daily Grind: Bartender

Location: Queens NY, but originally from Nashville, TN.

Why He Rides: To discover the world on two wheels while connecting mind and body, in turn making for one happy spirit.

Cruisading: The entire trip NYC to SF!

Fun Fact:  He just changed his first flat tire, with a little help from yours truly. I am so glad we got one of these under our belt before heading across America.

If you see Cruisader Shane on the road, say hi, or give him the ole biker’s nod.  He’ll be the one smiling!

You too can Join The Cruisade by riding, donating some gear, money, advice, shelter or just by spreading the word on the internets!