September 25, 2012

Carolina Beach to Welcome Nearly 1,000 Bicyclists as 2012 Cycle North Carolina Mountains to the Coast Bike Tour Ends

Carolina Beach, N.C.- On Saturday, October 6, an estimated 1,000 amateur cyclists from more than 35 states and four countries (Canada, Germany, Great Britain, and Russia) will converge on the Carolina Beach Boardwalk. That's when the Cycle North Carolina’s 14th annual Mountains to the Coast Bike Tour of the state will conclude its weeklong odyssey.

Hosted by North Carolina Amateur Sports (NCAS)—a non-profit organization that hosts the Powerade State Games of North Carolina—Cycle North Carolina is a fully supported recreational bike tour. Formed in 1999, the event is designed to promote physical fitness and health, provide economic impact and publicity to communities across the state, while showcasing the state’s beauty, scenic attractions and cultural diversity.

The 14th Annual Cycle North Carolina Mountains to the Coast Bike Tour will take place September 29 through October 6, 2012 along a back-road tour of the Tar Heel State from Brevard to Carolina Beach. This year's cross-state route allows cyclists to explore the diverse topography, culture and history of North Carolina¾from the picturesque Blue Ridge Mountains to the Piedmont to Wilmington’s historic river district, Greenfield Lake, the Intracoastal Waterway and the big finish at Carolina Beach’s original boardwalk.

The overnight communities of Brevard, Lake Lure, Shelby, Matthews, Rockingham, Lumberton, White Lake, and Carolina Beach will welcome Cycle North Carolina participants. According to event organizers, more than 1,000 bicyclists visit different towns each year generating an estimated economic impact of $200,000-$500,000 for host communities.

2012 marks the third year that Wilmington, N.C. & Island Beaches have been chosen as Cycle North Carolina’s final destination. Riders previously visited in the years 2000 and 2005, when the rides ended at Battleship Park. This year’s End-of-the-Ride celebration in Carolina Beach will take place from 12:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m. on October 6 at the Carolina Beach Boardwalk. The event will feature a healthy dose of Southern hospitality with an end-of-ride meal and celebration featuring local entertainment. Cyclists staying overnight will have the option to camp on the beach or on the river side of the island at Carolina Beach State Park. Many cyclists will opt for overnight hotel accommodations.

According to North Carolina Amateur Sports, Cycle North Carolina riders are active bike tourists who are environmentally conscious, adventurous, and appreciate heritage tourism. This year’s participants range in age from 5 years to 84 years, with an average age of 56. Most riders have professional careers.

“We are delighted to once again be the final destination for this unique sports event,” states Kim Hufham,

President/CEO of the New Hanover County Tourism Development Authority. “The CVB and its travel partners welcome all Cycle North Carolina participants and hope they enjoy our destination so much that they will soon return with friends and family to enjoy even more of our historic riverfront town and island beaches.”

With four distinct yet mild seasons, Wilmington, North Carolina and its island beaches host a wide range of sports events year-round. For more information about Cycle North Carolina, call the N.C. Amateur Sports office at 1-919-361-1133 or visit the website www.ncsports.org or http://cnc.ncsports.org. For a free official Visitors Guide for Wilmington, North Carolina and the island beaches of Carolina Beach, Kure Beach and Wrightsville Beach, please call 1-866-266-9690. For visitor information and a complete event calendar, please visit www.GoWilmingtonAndBeaches.com.
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