The biggest little fundraiser in Charleston expects to surpass the $1 million mark on Saturday.
In its six previous years, Pedal 4 Pattison's Spinning Marathon has raised more than $880,000 for Pattison's Academy, a local school for children with severe and multiple disabilities, and specifically its therapeutic summer camp.
The spinning marathon lasts all of four hours and involves about 350 riders sharing about 130 stationary indoor bikes, thereby requiring no fees for police, race managers and portable toilets.
The event is held at Pattison's Academy for Comprehensive Education Charter School on Bee's Ferry Road.
Some children at the school ride an "adaptive bike" on stage during the event and often inject plenty of emotion into the event, says Rebecca Young of Charleston RIDE, where organizers of the event teach year-round.
"It is the one day of the year that these kids get to be on a team and they love it," says Young.
The event also draws representatives from across the Charleston fitness community, including East Shore Athletic Club, the Medical University of South Carolina, Journey Cycle and Fitness, The Loft Pilates Studio, N:Motion, MADabolic, ECO Fitness, United CHS Racing Team, PrimeTime Fitness and the Charleston Marathon, among others.
While registration is closed for the seventh annual event, Young says some may still be able get on a waiting list to ride for one hour of the event by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
"We will try to place them on a bike if time is available," says Young.
By contrast, thousands will be converging on Boone Hall Plantation on Saturday for the fourth annual Rugged Maniac, an off-road 5K featuring about 25 obstacles, including plenty of muddy ones.
Among them will be climbing "a mountain of stacked shipping containers, sliding down a 100-foot water slide and navigating underground tunnels of mud.
"Every year we return, we strive to top what we've done the year before," says Brad Scudder, CEO of Rugged Maniac.
"We've completely redesigned the course for this year's event, adding completely new obstacles while improving on existing obstacles by making them bigger, better and more challenging," he said.
The day-long festival will also feature entertainment for participants and spectators alike, including music, mechanical bulls, bounce houses, craft beer, food and exhibition booths.
"Boone Hall Plantation offers the perfect combination of rugged terrain and easy accessibility that gives thrill-seekers from across South Carolina the opportunity to experience the most exhilarating 5K obstacle race in the country," said Rob Dickens, chief operating officer of Rugged Maniac.
"We are excited to return to the Charleston area once again and we're committed to making this year's event our best ever."
The event will be collecting donations to support the USO.
Tickets are available online at www.ruggedmaniac.com, but registering late will cost you: $82 including a required $9 insurance fee and nearly $10 for processing.
Spectators can attend for a fee of $10.
As of Monday, more than 4,000 had registered, according to Dickens.
Juvenile diabetes walk
Want something a tad less rugged but for a worthy cause?
Charleston's Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Walk will start at Daniel Island's Smythe Park at 2 p.m., with opening ceremonies and a walk to follow at 2:15 p.m. Late registration starts at 1 p.m.
Families, friends and local businesses are hoping to raise money to help fund research toward preventing, better treating and curing Type 1 diabetes and it's complications.
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which a person's pancreas loses the ability to produce insulin,a hormone essential to turning food into energy. It strikes both children and adults suddenly and is unrelated to diet and lifestyle.
It requires constant carbohydrate counting, blood-glucose testing and lifelong dependence on injected insulin.
The event will include a 1.2-mile walk, jump castles, balloon animals, pony cart rides, clown entertainment, arts and crafts stations, food and refreshments, and music by Y102.5.
The event is one of 200 held across the nation.
Reach David Quick at 937-5516.