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Beth Lasky

Oct 2, 2023

400+ riders pedal 42 miles to support the Erie Cattaraugus Rail Trail

On Saturday, September 30, over 400 bikers gathered at the start line of the EA2EVL Fondo, a charity bike ride that kicked off at 42 North Brewing Company in East Aurora. Under clear blue skies, the riders followed a police escort through the Village of East Aurora, winding their way south along the rolling hills and fall foliage on Route 240 into the Village of Ellicottville. The event ended with a lively finish-line celebration at Holiday Valley.

Launched in 2021, the EA2EVL Fondo—or non-competitive ride—raises awareness and funds to help open, build and maintain the 27-mile multi-use, recreational Erie Cattaraugus Rail Trail (ECRT) that runs along a former rail line from Orchard Park to Ashford, NY. For three consecutive years, this event has reached maximum capacity, this year selling out at 400+ riders and netting close to $50,000 for the rail trail.

“We keep raising the bar for this event,“ said Mary Brummer, ECRT Board President, “and we keep exceeding all expectations! I’d like to thank everyone who participated in this epic ride, including our loyal riders and sponsors, along with our dedicated volunteers. Your support of the Erie Cattaraugus Rail Trail truly matters.”

The 2021 and 2022 EA2EVL events raised over $100,000 in donations, which were used to clear and open the first 1.3 miles of the rail trail in Orchard Park. The funds raised from this year’s event will help to push the trail south, improving sections in the town of Aurora into West Falls.

The 2023 event was sponsored by National Fuel, 42 North Brewing Company, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, Phillips Lytle and Craig Small Law with tech support provided by Tom’s Pro Bikes. You can see all of the photos at

Image of bicycle riders emerging through the Start gate of the EA2EVL Fondo, a fundraising bicycle ride.

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