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    The Upper New York Conference of The United Methodist Church

    news article

    Wayne Ostrander Reaches 100,000 Cycling Miles

    July 10, 2017 / By Stan Purdum

    On a county road near his home in Suffield, Ohio, Wayne Ostrander, 83, retired elder from the Upper New York Conference, pedaled his 100,000th mile on a bicycle, July 3, 2017.

    Ostrander first started accumulating bicycle miles in 1972 while directing the Conference bicycle camp operated out of Findley Lake Camp and Retreat Center, a responsibility he continued for 17 years.

    In the years since his retirement in 1996, Ostrander has piled on the miles on solo rides, on rides with friends and at the Great Ohio Bicycle Adventure (GOBA), a week-long bicycling event that he participated in 13 times. He has also ridden with Pedaling Parsons, a group from the East Ohio Conference that uses their rides to raise money for various missions.

    Ostrander, along with his wife Mary, spent the first 18 winters of their retirement in Florida. In the R.V. Park where they stayed, he organized day rides for the park residents on Florida's beautiful bike trails—teaching seniors the advantages of staying active while enjoying the beauty of God’s world.

    Ostrander also helped lay out and test bicycle rides that were published in my book entitled Pedaling to Lunch: Bike Rides and Bites in Northeast Ohio (The University of Akron Press, 2009). In the ride dubbed “Granny’s Delight” (referring to a bicycle’s granny gear used for pumping up long hills), I wrote, “My friend Wayne Ostrander is joining me on this ride. ... Wayne is 11years older than me, but I know I will be struggling to keep up. A retired United Methodist minister, Wayne rides 40-mile stints, three times a week, and does so every week. Youthfully trim, Wayne thankfully curtails his speed when we ride together.”

    The Ostranders are active in Green Valley UMC, in the city of Green, Ohio.

    With more than 168,000 members, the Upper New York Annual (Regional) Conference of The United Methodist Church comprises 867 local churches and 65 new faith communities in 12 districts, covering 48,000 square miles in 49 of the 62 counties in New York state. Our mission is to “live the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to be God’s love with our neighbors in all places."