Five questions with … 6/17/07
Editor’s note: Duane and Connie Strawser, owners of Tour Nevada City Bike Shop, have served as the event organizers for the Nevada City Classic since 2001. This weekend the Strawsers and their army of volunteers will present the 47th annual races, the largest single-day sporting event in western Nevada County. Heading into the weekend, Duane Strawser shares his thoughts on the Classic.
1. How much time goes into preparing for this thing?
Not to be cliche, but literally year-round. Working with national media to get some attention, it’s all done far in advance. It’s amazing to me that they’re working on April issues, like with Sports Illustrated, in November. We know that publications like USA Weekend, Parade and American Profile, at least two of them are sending people to cover it this year. We spend a lot time trying to entice people to come out here and see our race and how it’s different from others across the country.
2. How many people does it take to pull this off?
This weekend, checking Connie’s volunteer list, we’ll have about 70 volunteers on the day of. And that’s right at the minimum of what we need. They’ll pretty much be working all day. If we had another 30, people could take some time off instead of working all day. We also have another 10-15 people who do many things to help us out through the year.
3. Why do you continue to do all you do with the race?
I guess because I’m racing – I used to race and am now racing again – and this, cycling, is how we earn our living. Anything to promote cycling. I love this sport. This is what I do.
4. What would you like to see happen with the race down the road?
I’d absolutely like to see somebody, preferably local, somebody or some corporation step up to support the race. We need to find another benefactor to put a little money in the race on a regular basis, which would allow us to compete against bigger races. Another $20 grand guaranteed a year would allow that. If we had that, we could focus on the event and making it the best it can be.
5. What does the Nevada City Classic mean to you?
To me it’s really a part of the identity of the community. Over and over and over, people come and tell us how much they liked the race and then they came back here to get married or to get a job and live here. We have the gold mining history and beautiful surroundings, and I think this is what highlights that. It’s part of the identity of this place and part of the future success here, hoping that people continue to come here.
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User Legend: Moderator Trusted User
New season. New co-head coaches. Same expectations.