Posted: Jun 7, 2012 8:27 AM by Carina Corral
Updated: Jun 7, 2012 8:35 AM
Bicyclists are rolling through Central Coast cities for the fifth day of the seven day AIDS/LifeCycle Ride.
Thousands of bicyclists pedaled through the streets of San Luis Obispo Wednesday afternoon. Their destination: an end to aids.
"I'm here to honor my brother Carl who died of AIDS in 2000 and I'm also here to increase awareness and education about HIV and AIDS," said one of the bicyclists, Tray Robinson.
More than 2,000 riders and 550 volunteer "roadies" began their seven day journey in San Francisco.
The Central Coast is the half way mark as they continue their 545 mile trek to Los Angeles. Along the way, they will raise awareness and millions of dollars in the fight against aids.
"A lot of the riders are HIV positive themselves and a lot of riders know somebody or have lost somebody to HIV or AIDS in the past and are doing it in honor of somebody," said Edit Kahn, one of the event's organizers.
And they are using the loss of a loved one to motivated them when the going gets tough.
"He's pushing me up those hills and you know he's pushing me right along the way. His energy and his spirit," said Robinson.
The riders spent Wednesday night in Santa Maria and said they are eager to get back on the road, admitting there is something special about this stretch of the journey.
"Being by the ocean and also day six on the way to Ventura, we're so close to the ocean, and we also go through Santa Barbara and they treat us well in Santa Barbara. It's just a real beautiful part of the ride," said Robinson.
Organizers said the event is expected to raise more the $11million this year.
The money will go to HIV/AIDS services in Los Angeles and San Francisco.