Hopkins 4K for Cancer

The mission of Hopkins 4K for Cancer is to unite communities across the country in the fight against cancer by spreading awareness, raising funds, and fostering hope.


June 14, 2007

by Olympia Moy
This morning, we set out from the First United Methodist Church in Montgomery City for Columbia, MO ready for a big adventure. David McGovern, a 4Ker from 2005 who is now working in Columbia, rode in the night before to join us and discovered that the bridge on our route had been washed out and was now under repairs. After studying some maps and consulting David Auchly (a local who co-authored a book on Montgomery County and treated us to a personal history lesson on the area) we decided to ford the river and avoid a 25- mile detour. Dione Auchly, David’s wife and reporter for the Montgomery Standard, had graciously collected donations of snacks for us to take on our way. She also provided us with photos and the news article from the 2006 4K. After ride dedications and moment of silence with our hosts from the church, we set off. Thanks to all the churches of Montgomery City for their support!

Upon reaching the bridge (or lack thereof) about 10 miles in, we had a short chat with the construction workers and then trekked into the adjacent cornfield by foot. The brave 4K’ers in the lead did a bit of bushwhacking down a slight ravine, wishing they had Chris’ foam pirate sword, or a real machete in hand. The rest of us carefully followed their tracks, passing bikes down the slope and sliding ourselves down onto the riverbed. We found some scrap plywood that could span the water, but that made things too easy. So we threw away our makeshift bridge after the first few 4K’ers successfully crossed by stepping over a chain of rocks for a more authentic “fording the river” (and my oxen died!) photo opportunity.

Since the 54-mile day was relatively short by week-three-4K standards, we arrived in Columbia with plenty of time for a bike shop visit and a stop at Culver’s for what was the first frozen custard experience for some of us kids from the northeast. After chatting with customers about our route and the 4K mission, the Culvers manager taught us that egg yolk is the secret ingredient that makes frozen custard “better than ice cream” and sent us off with a package full of frozen custard coupons for our travels west.

David McGovern had set up home-stays for us and after a cookout dinner with our hosts, we headed to the Twilight Festival in downtown Columbia to pass out Hopkins 4K brochures at the community’s weekly Thursday-night street festival. Allie serendipitously encountered the mayor of Columbia, who happens to be a cancer survivor as well as an avid cyclist! After the festival, we were spoiled by the first home-stays of the summer, with gracious hosts who were David’s colleagues from work and the Relay for Life committee in Columbia.