Bicycle ride to benefit Riverland scholars

Published 9:52 am Wednesday, July 25, 2012

It’s time to get your hog out and ride.

The 12th annual BOSS ride will take place this weekend to raise money for Riverland Community College. The Bikers of Student Success ride will throw back to a previous run through swampy scenery in southern Minnesota, though the actual course itself is a mystery designed by BOSS organizers this year.

“We’re excited, we’ve got lots of good things going on for students, at a time when they need it more than ever,” said Steve Bowron, dean for Institutional Advancement and head of the Riverland Foundation.

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The annual ride usually raises between $3,000 and $5,000 for student scholarships, which Riverland officials are hoping to increase over the next several years.

Riverland Foundation officials introduced a new campaign earlier this month to expand the amount of scholarships given out annually from 90 to 150 by 2015. The new 150×2015 campaign is designed to encourage business, organizations and families to step forward and help more Riverland students pay for college.

“We are really here to serve our communities,” Bowron said. “The students who attend plan to stay here, they just want better jobs.”

Bowron said the Riverland Foundation Board of Directors decided on the initiative after the college had to deny scholarships to about 150 students last year.

“We just didn’t have enough money, so we’re trying to get to a point where we don’t have to turn students away,” he said.

That’s why Bowron and other Riverland officials are excited for this weekend’s BOSS ride. The ride will take place Saturday with registration starting at 9:30 a.m. at Riverland’s Austin East campus The ride will start at about 10 a.m., and the day will wrap up at about 5 p.m. with a silent auction and raffle at Torge’s Live. The minimum donation to ride is $25.