Good Gravel, Great People
For the second year in a row, Gretchen and Ian Boswell knocked it out of the park for their Peacham Fall Fondo.
The day could not have been more perfect: the weather, the route, the extras, and most of all, the people.
The beneficiary for this year’s fondo is the Love Your Brain Foundation, whose mission is “to improve the quality of life of people affected by traumatic brain injury through programs that build community and foster resilience.”
Love Your Brain was co-founded by Adam Pearce, whose brother Kevin suffered a near fatal TBI in 2010.
Pro rider Ian Boswell became connected with Love Your Brain after suffering a TBI in a crash while racing in Italy.
The Peacham Fall Fondo really stands out from the crowd in how involved and supportive the whole community is around the race. From the plentiful, enthusiastic volunteers to the mid-ride pie stop at the Peacham Library, you really get the feeling the whole town comes together on this one.
Community support comes from Peacham Volunteer Fire Department & EMS, Peacham Town Hall, Peacham Road Crew, Peacham Community Housing, Peacham Congregational Church, and the many Peacham Community Members who gave time, energy, and pies!
The event has a lot of nice touches, like a coffee set up (I always want a cup after a ride!) and keepsake-quality ride numbers, not to mention a swag bag.
Vermont is known for its barns, and PFF didn’t disappoint.
Of course, one of the best things about a ride like this is getting to see your cycling friends.
The condition of the gravel was pretty much perfect.
The PFF route is shaped like a figure 8, with two loops that return to the start in the center of Peacham. The Peacham Library organizes a sag stop here with pies homebaked by members of the Peacham community. So many pies, so little time!
The course is well marked, with volunteers at every major intersection stopping traffic and keeping riders on course.
Post Ride Eats
But let’s face it, the real star of the show was Vermont herself.
Have you done the Peacham Fall Fondo? What did you think? Even if you didn’t do it this year, will you do it next year?
**Correction: The design for the race number plates was incorrectly attributed in an earlier version of this post. Craig Harrison designed the ride number plates and the posters for Peacham Fall Fondo 2019.