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The annual AIDS/LifeCycle bicycling fund-raiser, a 585-mile, weeklong ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles that wrapped up last weekend, raised more than $8 million for HIV services at the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation. More than 2,200 people participated in the event; more than 70,000 made donations to the beneficiaries.
"In this 25th year of the fight against AIDS, 2,200 participants took a week out of their lives to remind the world that AIDS deserves all our attention," said Mark Cloutier, executive director of the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, in a press statement. "There are 150,000 Californians living with HIV, and an expected 2,000 new infections this year. This money will fund services for those with HIV and support us in new, innovative approaches to reduce HIV infections."
The AIDS/LifeCycle ride set a new record for participation and money raised, attracting riders from 40 states and nine countries. The ride culminated with a rally held in West Los Angeles on June 10, at which Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa spoke. Several panels from the AIDS Memorial Quilt were also on display at the closing ceremony.
For more information about the fund-raiser, go online to www.aidslifecycle.org. (The Advocate)