By Melanie J. Knox, Page Editor
Twenty members of Gamma Sigma Phi are planning a bike ride to Pepperdine, in Malibu, Cali., over spring break. The ride will earn money for Habitat for Humanity, with the goal set at $7,000.
“We really like what Habitat does,” said Chris Brewer, junior finance major from Tulsa, Okla., and one of three leaders of the trip. “They are very visible in the community and so many ACU students are already involved. This is just our way of helping out.”
Many students may remember in the spring of 2001 when 18 members of GSP ran to Searcy, Ark., for charity and in honor of the 30th anniversary of Kinsmen in 1971 who had run to Arkansas as well. That spring, GSP also did a 25-hour basketball game to break a world record and raise money for the Noah Project.
“We just wanted to be able to do something like that again,” said Chris Jacobs, junior marketing major from Kailua, Hawaii, another leader.
The 20 club members participating will leave Abilene the Friday of spring break with two 15-passenger vans and four bicycles.
Taking turns, each biker will leave from one of the vans and ride five miles, where he will meet with the other van, and the next biker preparing for his turn. This way, each biker will get the chance to rest or sleep between turns.
It’s like a relay, Jacobs said, and right now they are looking for something to pass between bikers, like the football that was passed during the Arkansas run.
Jacobs also said that they will be contacting churches along the way to see if they can provide showers or food. They are also in contact with Pepperdine directly about lodging and food upon their arrival.
“It’s a great opportunity for ministry, as we will come in contact with lots of people who will naturally want to know who we are and what we are doing,” Jacobs said. “It’s not a Spring Break Campaign where you directly minister, since our primary ministry here is to Habitat, but we are hoping that through God’s grace we can brighten other’s days and minister to them.”
The money will be raised in various ways. As a group, the men will be contacting different companies and having fund raisers such as a Krispy Kreme doughnut sale or washing cars for a car dealership.
Individually, they will be contacting their churches and families for support. The estimated cost for each participant is $400, though Jacobs said they aren’t planning on spending that in its entirety.
The group is also considering meeting up with the Long Beach or LA campaigns on Friday to do an activity before they drive back to ACU on Saturday.
“The people who ran to Arkansas last year said it was the greatest experience of their college career,” Jacobs said. “We want to replicate that experience for the guys. This is a once in a life-time chance, one that no one has done before.”
The group will be meeting for a small group Chapel on Thursdays to pray for Habitat for Humanity and for their trip, and to continue getting details in order.