Posted by Mary Wimberley on 2008-03-03

Samford University's fourth annual Old Howard 100 Bike Ride through the countryside of Perry and Hale counties will be Saturday, April 19.

The bicycle ride will begin at 9 a.m. on the campus of Judson College in Marion, Ala., where Samford was founded as Howard College in 1841.

Routes of 30, 50, 70 and 100 miles take riders through Newbern, Greensboro, the Talladega National Forest, Folsom and the Perry Lakes wetlands region, depending on the length chosen. All routes end back at Judson College.

The routes include five Support and Gear (SAG) stops at sites of historic interest. Last year's ride through Alabama's historic Black Belt brought together more than 200 bicyclists from throughout the southeast.

Proceeds from the ride benefit Sowing Seeds of Hope and the ministry's special assistance to persons with diabetes, hypertension and kidney disease.

On-site registration and package pickup begins at 8 a.m., with the mass start at 9 a.m.

Early registration is $30 by April 11. Late registration is $40. Students may register for $15, and residents of Perry and Hale counties may register for $5. Ride details and online registration are available at For more information call Samford's Howard College of Arts and Sciences at (205) 726-2771 or email Bridget Rose at

Sowing Seeds of Hope, a partnership between Perry County and the Alabama Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, seeks to improve the quality of life and work in the area through improved educational opportunities, health care, tourism, transportation and economic development.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.