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Team raising funds for Camp Boggy Creek Challenge Ride

August 31, 2018
By TIFFANY REPECKI ( , Island Reporter, Captiva Current, Sanibel-Captiva Islander

A team of eight from Billy's Bike Shop and Billy's Rentals at Bailey's Center are raising funds and training for the 8th Annual Camp Boggy Creek Challenge Ride set for Sept. 8 in Eustis.

Camp Boggy Creek is specifically designed for children with chronic or life-threatening illnesses and allows them to enjoy the activities of a "traditional" camp in a safe medically-sound environment.

"I think this is the sixth year that we've done it," Clare Harris, manager of Billy's Bike Shop and one team member, said of the ride. "It's such a special place and it gives kids the joy of being a child."

Article Photos

A team of eight from Billy’s Bike Shop and Billy’s Rentals on Sanibel have been raising funds and training for the 8th Annual Camp Boggy Creek Challenge Ride on Sept. 8. Some of the members are, from left, co-owner Salli Kirkland, Preston Schuetz, Clare Harris and Ryan Markosky.

At the camp, children whose lives have been a series of medical procedures and hospital stays are transformed into just "kids." They have the opportunity to be with others coping with the same illness or condition and realize they are not alone.

"The bigger the fundraising, the more children that get to enjoy the camp," she said.

This year, the Billy's team is raising funds through two different raffles.

There are tickets to win a pedal-assist electric bike donated by Easy Motion, valued at $2,999.

Harris explained that those who donate $100 will receive a ticket for the bike raffle.

"We're only selling 100 tickets," she added.

As of Aug. 29, about half of the tickets were available.

In addition, the team is selling raffle tickets for a range of prizes donated by local businesses.

"We got a two-night stay at Kona Kai," she said. "We got various restaurant gift certificates."

There is the Prawnbroker Restaurant Group, which includes the Sanibel Grill, Timbers Restaurant and Matzaluna, The Jac Island Grille & Rum Bar, Sanibel Deli & Coffee Factory and Lighthouse Cafe.

"We've got a kayak or paddleboard eco-tour for up to four people," Harris said.

She noted that the package has a value of more than $200.

"We've got gift baskets from Bank of the Islands - a 12-month membership to Planet Fitness," she said. "So there's some pretty good prizes here."

The tickets are four for $10 or 10 for $20.

As for the team itself, it is made up of Harris, co-owner Salli Kirkland, Preston Schuetz, Ryan Markosky, Maureen McEleney, Andrew Long, Sean Pierce and Beth Traucht.

Harris noted that Kirkland and Traucht are the only avid cyclists.

"We're just passionate about it," she said of why she and the others participate. "The more people we have on our team, the more money we hope to raise. It's pretty amazing when you see the kids."

"It's the only reason I'm getting on a bike and riding 40 miles," Harris added.

For the event, three of the team members will do a 60-mile ride and another three members will do a 40-mile ride. In addition, one person will do a 20-mile ride and the last has a 15-mile off-road ride.

"Over 330 miles combined," she said.

Harris noted that the ride is not like ones in the local area.

"It's a challenge because it's hilly up there in Central Florida," she said.

Raffle tickets can be purchased at Billy's Bike Shop or Billy's Rentals at Bailey's Center.

All the proceeds will fund Florida children attending Camp Boggy Creek.

Direct donations can be made at

For more information, visit the website or call 239-472-3620.

For more about Camp Boggy Creek, visit online at

Billy's Bike Shop is at 1509 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel.

Billy's Rentals at Bailey's Center is at 2437 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel.



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