When the Tour de Rock riders roll into Langford on Wednesday, Donna Fraser will greet her husband with the largest Cops for Cancer party the city has ever seen.
Fraser, wife of tour rider and West Shore RCMP Const. Rod Fraser, has spearheaded the Tour de Rock-West Shore community celebration at Veterans Memorial Park, offering the public a chance to meet the riders.
In past years, the tour would hit a number of West Shore schools and a hold a stopover at Westshore Town Centre for a head shave event before riding to Sooke. Now Langford will become the major and final stop of the day.
“The cancer society wanted a larger event. Now they’ll bike here and end their day here,” Fraser said. “Riders will be introduced and will mingle with the crowd. We see this as the first annual event. We want it to grow for next year.”
The event kicks off at 1:30 p.m. with live music, vendors and sponsor tents — along with traditional head shaving and leg waxing. The Tour de Rock has a stop at Willway elementary in Langford before pedalling to Sooke. Riders are scheduled to arrive at Veterans Memorial at 3:45 p.m. for a barbecue.
Backed by a few dozen volunteers, Fraser said organizing the event has gone smoothly — the only crimp in the plan could be the weather. Sponsors have plenty of tents, she noted.
“Everyone wants to help — Thrifty Foods, Coast Capital, community policing, RCMP,” Fraser said. “Support from the community has been awesome. It’s overwhelming.”
Tracie Clayton, a TDR organizer with the Canadian Cancer Society, said the larger celebration in Langford is the product of a strong and dedicated volunteer base.
“We are always looking to develop relationships in communities, but it depends on volunteers,” Clayton said. “If you have committed volunteers for an area who are willing to put in the work and develop a presence for the tour, it makes events more successful. Volunteers make events blossom.”
Fraser said she can’t wait to welcome her husband home, but is proud he is riding the tour. She wasn’t surprised Rod took up the challenge — many of their relatives have been lost to cancer. Rod had also taught curling to Luc Savage, a Colwood teen diagnosed with leukemia in 2010.
“The last straw for Rod was the young fellow he coached. Luc Savage gave him that extra push to do something to make a difference,” Fraser said. “He wanted to be able to do something, especially for the kids.”
Tour de Rock Day – West Shore is Oct. 5, from 1:30 to 6 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Park.
White Spot will be barbecuing up burgers and Serious Coffee will serve hot drinks. Entertainment starts at 1:30 p.m. A bouncy castle and face painting will be on site for kids. Riders are scheduled to be at the park from 3:45 to 6 p.m.
To schedule a head shave or leg waxing during the event, email Donna Fraser at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more see www.tourderock.ca.