Prater Memorial Bike Tour is Saturday

Dennis Prater

Vanceburg’s Dennis Prater has helped to organize a cycling tour to promote tourism and cycling in the area. Prater said the ride will also honor his cousin, Keith Prater, who died in 2017.

The third annual tour will be Saturday, September 25, beginning in Vanceburg with cyclists traveling either a 20, 25, 40 or 63 mile route that will bring them back to the starting location on Market Street.

Prater says he’s excited to participate in the local bicycle event.

“I’ve always had a passion to become a cyclist,” he said, adding he became seriously involved in May 2018 and joined the Limestone Cycling League.

Prater credits the assistance he’s received from Christina Bothman for helping him become involved in cycling. Prater said the cycling is one of the steps he has taken in an effort to take better care of himself.

“I’ve been working at eating healthier and getting exercise,” he said. He is the son of Jack and the late Sue Prater and is employed by the Lewis County Board of Education.

He’s a member of Vanceburg First Baptist Church and volunteers with the local chapter of the Salvation Army.

“I would like to ask motorists to watch for cyclists along the route that day and to share the road every day,” he said.

Prater said he expects to be crossing the finish line between 3:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. Saturday at Vanceburg First Baptist Church.

“I want to thank everyone for the support and encouragement they’ve

give me,” he said. Dennis Prater said cyclists will be guided by route markings, use phone apps for map guidance, and have rest stops along the way.

Rest stops are planned and COVID-19 guidelines will be followed, he said.

Prater added the 20-mile route will be flat and has been added for recreational cyclists who may not want to tackle the more strenuous legs of the event.

A pizza meal will be provided to the cyclists at the completion of the tour.

“Everyone is welcome to join the ride,” Dennis Prater said. “There is no cost to register.”

He added there will be several members of the Limestone Bicycling League participating.

Breakfast for participants will begin at Vanceburg First Baptist Church at 8:00 a.m. and guest speakers will address participants beginning about 8:30 a.m.

In addition to watching (606) 932-3619. for the cyclists participating in the event, he is asking for those who have dogs along the route to keep them restrained during the times the cyclists will be traveling through.

“Dogs can be a real issue,” he said.

He added deputies with the Lewis County Sheriff’s Department and officers with the Vanceburg Police Department will be assisting in ensuring the safety of cyclists.

Keith Prater was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia on June 6, 2017, and passed away July 19, 2017.

During his four years with Rowan County schools he was a special education teacher at the high school as well as the head coach of the baseball and bowling teams.

Keith Prater was also a special education teacher and the head coach of Lewis County Lions prior to moving to Rowan County.

As the head coach of the Lions, he turned a losing 5-22 season into a 25-6 season in just one year.

For more information on the ride call Dennis Prater at 606-202-3104.

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