20170625_141859Why are we donating the proceeds of the Seven Lakes Ride to Eastern Connecticut Cancer Institute (ECCI)? This is why:

The economic woes we have all faced recently have presented even more of a challenge to patients undergoing cancer treatment at Eastern Connecticut Cancer Institute (ECCI) in Manchester, CT. Many patients depend on volunteers to drive them to and from ECCI for treatment. The increase in fuel costs has drastically reduced the number of volunteers available to drive patients. In 2011, 1312 car rides from volunteers were provided to patients and in 2012 that number fell to 217. Frequently patients are unable to work during treatment and are in need of extra funds for gas, groceries, and prescriptions. In one instance, a patient was diagnosed with cancer, laid off from work, lost his medical benefits, lost his home and had to move in with an elderly parent and struggle to find money to buy food, gas and medications. This is just one of the many unfortunate stories that would be seen and heard at ECCI. It is this need that inspired one of our Nerac Earth club members who is also an ECCI employee to propose The Seven Lakes Ride to “Pedal for Patients”. Proceeds from The Seven Lakes Ride will help eligible ECCI patients by providing items such as gas, pharmacy, and grocery cards to help with transportation, medication, and grocery needs. Currently 65 patients have received assistance, since the inaugural event in 2013.

Nerac Earth Cycling is a group of cyclists of all ages and abilities who strive to share their passion for cycling with others as well as to support local causes that have a positive impact on the communities that we live, work, and play in. The Nerac Earth Cycling Club was founded in 2005 and has a successful track record of promoting organized rides. We anticipate this ride will be just as successful due to our experience and enthusiasm for this worthy cause. Please join us in our efforts by participating in the inaugural Seven Lakes Rides that begins in Stafford Springs, CT and travels through the charming rural towns of Willington, Ashford, Union, and Woodstock then heads into the quaint southeastern Massachusetts towns of Sturbridge, Holland, and Wales before returning to Stafford. Your participation will help provide a much needed service to the patients of ECCI and ease them through a very difficult period.

Thank you,
Your friends at Nerac Earth Cycling Club



Announcement  March 18, 2019


It is with mixed emotions that I write this update.


I have spent a considerable amount of time contemplating many changes that will be occurring in my life, such as my upcoming retirement and relocation to a warmer climate to enjoy it in.


Sadly the 2018 Seven Lakes Ride was the last annual event to be held due to this decision.


Since its inception in 2012 we have assisted over one hundred twenty patients with basic necessities such as medications, food, home heating fuel, nutritional supplements, gas, transportation costs, patient comfort measures, etc. The response I got from these people was overwhelming. Typically a handshake or hug followed by a “thank you so much” with tears in their eyes. It is one of the most touching things I have witnessed in my tenure as a therapist.


All of this would not have been possible without your participation and generosity. I always take the time to tell my patients how I raised the funds, who the sponsors were and how I couldn’t be successful without the people who volunteer before, during and after the event. They will comment on how in today’s tough global economy there are still companies, private individuals, volunteers and cyclists who take the time to consider helping people who are trying to battle a crippling disease and fighting to survive.


I would like to thank you, on behalf of my patients, for participating in The Seven Lakes Ride “Pedaling for Patients”. Thank you for having the consideration, sensitivity and thoughtfulness to help those who are less fortunate.  Thank you for helping touch the hearts and souls of my patients, whom I care so deeply about.


And finally thank you for helping me make my dream of this cycling event come true.


Peter LaValley


The Seven Lakes Ride