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Tour de Delta

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With warm days and cool nights, September is the perfect time to ride your bike around the neighborhood -- take a test spin, stretch those leg muscles, and feel the breeze on your skin after months of intense heat. This weekend, however, during the FedEx Rock-n-Roll MS Bike Tour, 750 Mid-South cyclists are taking it to the extreme, traveling from Graceland to the Gold Strike Casino Resort and back. Think of it as the Tour de Delta -- 150 miles, on two wheels, with only a bike helmet for protection.

"You're actually only on Highway 61 for a short portion. The riders will hit a lot of back roads," explains tour coordinator Miranda Harper, who says that local law enforcement, support vehicles, and a volunteer crew of BMW motorcyclists will serve as extra eyes and ears for the cyclists. "It's not a race," Harper adds. "Our fastest riders do it in four hours, but most people take six to eight." After a night of blackjack, they'll climb back on the saddle for the return trip, where Elvis and a meal of Corky's BBQ await.

It sounds like fun, but it's also for a worthy cause. Last year, the tour raised more that $400,000 for the Multiple Sclerosis Society, and this year, says Harper, she hopes to hit a cool half-million. $65 plus a $200 minimum pledge will get you a spot on the starting line. To ride or volunteer visit Bikes Plus or go to www.NationalMSSociety.org/TNS. You can also register at Graceland the day of the event, between 6:30 and 7 a.m.

FedEx Rock-n-Roll MS Bike Tour, September 16th and 17th, www.NationalMSSociety.org/TNS

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