More than 1,000 cyclists are using pedal power to help make wishes come true for children battling life-threatening medical conditions.
Volunteers with the 26th Annual Wish-A-Mile Bicycle Tour left Traverse City early Friday morning, kicking off the 300-mile fundraising event.
The bike tour is the Make-A-Wish Foundation's largest fundraiser, with a goal of raising more than $2-million.
You may see bicyclists through out the weekend as they log miles and raise money. The tour continues through Sunday, ending at the Michigan International Speedway (MIS) in Brooklyn, Mich.
The tour coincides with the WAM 50, a one-day, 50-mile ride that starts and finishes at MIS on July 28. More than 200 riders will bike the WAM 50.
"All of our riders, volunteers and supporters are passionate about WAM and our mission to grant wishes for Michigan children with life-threatening medical conditions," said Karen Davis, Make-A-Wish Michigan president & CEO. "As our largest fundraiser, WAM is a major component to helping us reach our goal of granting more than 400 wishes this year."
Since 1984, Make-A-Wish Michigan has granted more than 7,000 wishes to Michigan children with life-threatening medical conditions.
According to a 2011 U.S. study of wish impact conducted by Make-A-Wish America, most health professionals surveyed believe a wish-come-true can have positive impacts on the health of children. Kids say wishes give them renewed strength to fight their illnesses, and their parents say these experiences help strengthen the entire family.