City bike race rolls on as ‘Parx Casino Philadelphia Cycling Classic’

Congressman Bob Brady
Congressman Bob Brady

The city’s annual bike race has been christened the Parx Casino Philadelphia Cycling Classic after newly-announced title sponsor Parx Casino on Thursday pledged $100,000 to keep it rolling.

“It’s much easier to get things done when you have a top cast that want to get this to happen and various people making sure that we don’t lose our tradition,” said Congressman Bob Brady, who in a series of meetings brokered the arrangement following the folding of the 2013 International Cycling Championship due to financial hardship.

“I’m a firm believer that if you lose your tradition, the city of Philadelphia will lose its identity,” he said. “And I didn’t want that to happen.”

Organizers said the new event will feature separate races with equal prize money for men and women. It will follow a similar course through Manayunk – including the infamous wall climb – but will likely be shorter and more viewer-friendly.

“One of our key goals is to make this race as exciting for the spectators who will be lining the street watching this as it will be for the cyclists who are coming to town,” said Philadelphia Triathlon director Richard Adler, who is heading up the race. “I think that’s going to change it up a little bit.”

“I’m just overwhelmed,” said Jane Lipton of the Manayunk Development Corporation. “Two weeks ago, we got some news that was very disturbing. We immediately had a press Q&A and we kind of said to the Philadelphia universe, ‘We need help, this thing can’t die.’ And help came in a way that is unbelievable.”

Stakeholders are meeting on Friday with members of Mayor Michael Nutter’s administration and expect to release more details about the retooled event by the middle of next week.

Getting creative

Officials said that, in the wake of the city’s decision in 2008 to require event organizers to pay for the cost of city services to support parades and festivals, public-private partnerships are becoming increasingly important to ensure that treasured traditions can continue.

“It is a tremendous tradition and we have to afford it,” said Sen. Vincent Hughes. “What this partnership does is send a message of how we need to operate if there’s an issue or a problem. We all come together, no mater where we’re from.”

“We’re willing to help the city and we understand we have a budget problem,” Brady said. “I understood that when we got the Mummers parade back and all the other parades back and we’ll pay for the services.”

“Everything has a value,” Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr. said. “One of the things that the city of Philadelphia has to do is adequately measure what that value is to private sponsorships.”

“Our venues, our vistas, our views, our events have merit to a consuming audience and so we have to figure out exactly what that is so we can market it properly. I think Parx recognizes it. We just have to kind of understand our worth.”

Piling on

Sponsorships include:

$250,000 from title sponsor Parx Casino in both 2013 and 2014.

$100,000 from New Penn Financial.

$50,000 from the Philadelphia Federal Credit Union.

$25,000 from Sunoco.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

Canadian charged in 'Heartbleed' attack on tax agency

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian police have arrested a 19-year-old man and charged him in connection with exploiting the "Heartbleed" bug to steal taxpayer data from…

National

Every dog has his day in court, in…

(Reuters) - Call him juror K-9.A computer glitch is likely to blame for a summons that called a German Shepherd to report for jury duty,…

Local

Local politicians pressure DOJ to investigate Ramarley Graham…

On what would have been his 21st birthday, Ramarley Graham's mother joined elected leaders to ask the U.S. Department of Justice investigate his death.

Local

Muslim leaders welcome NYPD surveillance changes with degree…

Leaders and advocates praise the NYPD's move to shut down a unit tied to its Muslim surveillance program but say there's more left to do.

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 8

Sure, it's called Survivor. But this season should really be called 'The Tony Show.'

Television

Jim Rash talks 'The Writer's Room' and amazing…

For Jim Rash, as the fifth season of "Community" comes to a close, the second season of "The Writer's Room" begins.

Going Out

Tasty chicken and waffles in NYC

Try some soul food goodness around the city.

Television

'Dexter' star Jennifer Carpenter moves into producing role

The actress who played the title character's sister in "Dexter" is teaming up with producer George Stelzner to adapt Erika Hayasaki's book "The Death Class:…

NHL

Marc Staal healthy, eager to contribute to Rangers…

Marc Staal remembers the feeling of helplessness watching his teammates compete for hockey’s ultimate prize and being unable to contribute.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

NHL

Flyers, Rangers meet in playoffs for 11th time

The Flyers and Rangers will start a new chapter in a historic rivalry.

MLB

Masahiro Tanaka dominates Cubs over eight shutout innings

Masahiro Tanaka certainly had no-hit caliber stuff Wednesday as he allowed just two bunt singles.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…

Wellbeing

This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…

Wellbeing

Unexplained infertility may be caused by lack of…

Researchers have identified a protein on the egg's surface that interacts with another protein on the surface of sperm, allowing the two cells to join.

Tech

5 surprising facts about Google Glass

Your sex life could get more interesting.