unicorn quest

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Saturday, October 22, 2005

unicorn quest

October 20 is Levi Leipheimer Day
By Bill Schneider, 10-11-05

It’s still a two-wheeled deal, but now Butte, Motnana has a new hero. Move over Evel Knievel and your motorcycles. Make way for Levi Leipheimer and his muscle-powered bikes. On October 20, the Mining City will honor a hometown hero Levi Leipheimer who has become a leader in the cycling world.

Leipheimer, a Butte native who raced throughout Montana and surrounding states during his junior years, is coming off an impressive year. He placed sixth in the biggest cycling event of them all, the Tour de France, and won the 2005 Tour de Germany. Leipheimer is currently team leader of a pro team sponsored by Gerolsteiner, a Gernan bottled water company.

At 1:00 pm, a bicycle parade, for cyclists of all ages and abilities, will start at the Butte Plaza Mall along Harrison Avenue and end at the Butte Civic Center. “We are encouraging everyone who loves to ride to join Levi for this special ride,” says local cycling promoter John Coulthard, “and every child who attends will receive a free raffle ticket to win one of several special top-of-the-line bikes.”

Following the parade, an official ceremony with festive music, free snacks and beverages, will be held at the Butte Civic Center Annex and will include Montana state officials and local dignitaries. Coulthard said Leipheimer will speak with local young people about his personal journey. “His message of hard work, perseverance, and staying drug-free will be just part of his uplifting message.”

Coulthard also encouraged local school children to wear their school colors for the parade, noting that public schools will be closed for teacher conferences.

By Bill Schneider, 10-11-05 | add comment | email this story | read more like this

Why I missed Levi Leipheimer Day

Yes, I the bicycling fiend had to read about it in the paper and hear from Uptown friends about the cool bicycle parade. Why? Because they aimed the event at children--we adults were stuck at work as it happened Thursday during the day.

Still, I'm glad they did it. I'm glad Levi was overwhelmed. And I'm glad his hometown is finally honoring him.

Now if they could just make it as splashy an event in the future as they do for Evel Kneivel (reputedly not a very nice guy)--

But that may be too much to hope for. There's no potential for beer sales involved with a Tour de France contender. Maybe bicycling just isn't considered as "cool" yet as motorcycle jumping.

But maybe someday...


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