February 9, 2018 – Sunday, February 11th, marks the ninth annual Jim Rogers Memorial Ride, which begins at 11 a.m. at the Tour of Nevada City Bicycle Shop at 457 Sacramento St. in Nevada City. We invite RUNNERS to join us this year! A Bicycle Benefit Lunch will follow the ride at 12:30. If it rains, location TBA.

Jim Rogers was killed on January 31, 2010. (Jim is on the left) He was riding his bicycle on Highway 174 when he was struck from behind and killed by a distracted driver as he was ascending the climb out of Bear River Canyon. He was in her line of vision for over 6 seconds, but she never saw him because she was distracted, allegedly using her cell phone.

The event is held every year in an effort to bring attention to the dangers of distracted driving.  We’ll have hundreds of our “Jim Rogers stickers” available that were designed to place on cell phones, dashboards, etc., to remind folks to “Save Lives – Drive Safely – Remember Jim Rogers”.   We encourage folks to place them on their dashboard and/or steering wheel as a reminder BEFORE they reach for their phone. Put them anywhere other folks will ask “what is the sticker for?” AND EDUCATE your friends and family!

Jim Rogers, along with his cycling buddy Ron Miller, created Tour of Nevada City Bike Shop in Nevada City when they were only teenagers. Jim was an avid cyclist and rode throughout Nevada County since the early 1970’s.

In addition to reminding folks of the dangers of distracted driving, the event focuses on the joys of bike riding. Jim was a mentor to many young cyclists and a supporter of youth cycling in Nevada County. Jim was an “ambassador of cycling” according to all who knew him. He welcomed even the most novice riders to join a ride and saw to it that they finished the ride with a smile on their face. To honor Jim’s generous spirit, during the Memorial Ride advanced riders assist the less experienced riders and see that they have a safe and enjoyable time; and in like spirit, there will be “no runner left behind”.

Interest in the sport of cycling is building. The Youth Bicyclists of Nevada County, the Nevada Union Mountain Bike team, and the junior SHO-AIR/Sierra Express team gain members each year, which is something Jim would have loved.

Approximately 200-300 cyclists have participated in past Memorial Rides. While this is actually the 8th anniversary of Jim’s death, it is the 9th year of the ride, as the first Memorial Ride was the day before his Celebration of Life in 2010. The ride follows the LeMond Loop, which is about 16 miles. There is also a shorter 6 mile route that stays mostly in town. We invite the runners to travel this 6-mile loop which starts at the bike shop and goes out Old Downieville Hwy and back.

A Bicycle Benefit Lunch will be available after the ride – at about 12:30. A suggested donation of $5 will get you an awesome sandwich courtesy of the Nevada City SPD Market.

The proceeds from the Benefit Lunch will go to support scholarships given through Youth Bicyclists of Nevada County (YBONC). Jim’s passion for riding and his influence on young cyclists led to the creation of the Jim Rogers Inspiration Award, which the NU MTB team awards to the team member who exhibits the most “Jim-like” characteristics throughout the year. Check out more information about the YBONC Scholarship Fund at ybonc.org.

It’s tragic that people need something like a death to take notice of the dangers of distracted driving. PLEASE join the thousands of people who have put “Jim Rogers stickers” on their cell phones, dashboards, bicycles and bicycle helmets – they have even been found on lockers in the hallways at Nevada Union HS! — to remind us not to use our phones while driving. And explain to others WHY you have a sticker on your phone. There are too many people still using their cell phones while driving – texting and/or talking.  Let’s do all we can to make our vehicles “No Phone Zones” (a label created by Oprah).  There are other ways that people get in accidents by being distracted; children yelling, changing music, eating, drinking, etc. But, cell phone use is the main cause of accidents from driving distracted.

Remember Jim Rogers, Save lives, Drive safely!!!