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Tuesday, September 21, 1999

Sea Gull Century Welcomes 6,000 Bicyclists-October 9

SALISBURY, MD--This year decorative flags will be on display throughout Salisbury celebrating the region's No. 1 annual tourism event, the 100-mile Sea Gull Century. Started 11 years ago as a challenge among friends this year's ride, on Saturday, October 9, welcomes some 6,000 participants from throughout the East Coast.

Eastern Shore scenery, from calm woods along the Pocomoke River to picturesque ponies at Assateague Island, has proven a powerful magnet for bicycling enthusiasts. The Sea Gull Century is the largest Century ride in the East, drawing riders from as far away as California, Washington, Texas, Rhode Island, Canada and England. The League of American Bicyclists named it one of three Century Challenge Winners in 1997, and Bicycling magazine has named it one of the Top 10 rides in the country for the scenery, route and organization.

Many area motels and hotels have been booked for months, and cyclists will stay as far away as Easton, Ocean City and Dover. Marketing studies indicate that Century riders will bring $1.4 million into the local economy, some of which will be re-spent locally for a total economic impact of $2.5 million.

Prints by well-known artist and native, C. Keith Whitelock, featuring a bike near the Pocomoke River at the Milburn Landing State Park rest stop, will also be available for purchase. The prints, listed to 950, cost $45 and are signed and numbered.

Faculty, staff and students may still register to participate in this year's ride with no late fee. The registration fee of $35 must be received before September 30.

For information on the Sea Gull Century, call 410-548-2772 or check out the following Web site: www.seagullcentury.org


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