Austin prepares for TRAM bike ride

Published 7:52 am Friday, March 4, 2011

Mary Nelson speaks to members of the Noon Lions Club about the TRAM Bike Ride that will be riding through Austin this summer. - Eric Johnson/

It may be a long way out, but Mary Nelson is spreading the word about the The Ride Across Minnesota bike ride.

“The goal is to raise money for MS (Multiple Sclerosis) and awareness for MS,” Nelson said.

She’s participating in her 22nd TRAM this year and is excited the ride is coming through Austin.

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But Nelson has other goals, too. She sees the event as an opportunity to show off Austin to nearly 1,000 bikers in the five-day event that rolls through town July 26.

Volunteers and spectators will welcome the riders to Austin at Todd Park with food and entertainment.

“We just want to show off what Austin can do,” Nelson said.

The riders should begin arriving in Austin around 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. After that, they will spend the rest of the day in Austin.

Nelson wants as many volunteers and vendors as possible to facilitate the visitors, so they will have a positive perception of Austin — as soon as they arrive.

“We want them showered and shaved and shopping,” Nelson said. “You never know who is going to come back.”

To join the ride, participants must be 12 or older, file the $50 registration fee and pledge $300 or more for Multiple Sclerosis. All the proceeds stay in Minnesota.

To register for the ride, go to