35th annual Pan-Mass Challenge sets record high fundraising goal

NEEDHAM, Mass. — The Pan-Mass Challenge (PMC) has set an all-time high fundraising goal of $40 million for the 5,500 cyclists who will ride up to 190 miles on Aug. 2 and 3, 2014 in the 35th annual bike-a-thon. The funds they raise will go to support adult and pediatric patient care and cancer research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute through the Jimmy Fund and will bring the PMC’s 35-year Jimmy Fund contribution to $454 million. In 2013, PMCers raised and contributed $39 million to Dana-Farber, the largest sum ever raised by a single athletic fundraising event.

“The PMC is unique in terms the money our riders raise each year,” said Founder and Executive Director Billy Starr. “This group is passionate and committed. If any organization can reach this goal, it is the PMC.”

Connecting athleticism to charitable fundraising was a new idea in 1980 when Starr and 35 of his friends rode across Massachusetts and raised $10,200 for cancer research. Today, athletic fundraising events annually raise more than $2 billion, funding crucial programs at health and human service organizations nation-wide. The PMC leads the pack and is the most efficient. The PMC annually contributes 100 percent of every rider-raised dollar directly to the Jimmy Fund.

The PMC is so respected in cycling and fundraising circles that people travel from all over the world to participate. Cyclists come from 38 states and five countries to ride across the Commonwealth in the PMC. The PMC family is made up of more than 5,500 riders, 3,300 volunteers and 230,000 donors. Cyclists choose between 12 routes that range from 25 miles to 190 miles. The camaraderie shared by cyclists, volunteers, and supporters is among the PMC’s greatest attributes. Doctors at Dana-Farber join their patients as teammates and ride for a unified goal. More than 300 PMC cyclists and volunteers are cancer survivors or current patients. Thousands of riders have lost loved ones to the disease. Still more ride in honor of those in treatment.

This summer, each cyclist will commit to raising between $500 and $4,300 for the privilege of being a member of the PMC team. Yet, ninety percent of all PMCers exceed the minimum fundraising contribution and one-third raise more than twice the amount required.

The PMC is presented by the Red Sox Foundation and the New Balance Foundation. Another 200 companies support the event through donations of goods, services and money. The PMC is nationally recognized as a model in fundraising efficiency; it generates more than half of the Jimmy Fund’s annual revenue and it is Dana-Farber’s largest single contributor. “The PMC has made what we do at Dana-Farber possible,” said Edward J. Benz Jr., MD, president of Dana-Farber.

PMC at a Glance 

YEARS

RIDERS

VOLUNTEERS

DONATION

1980 - 1989

  4,969

 1,778

    $3,665,800

1990 - 1999

16,668

11,921

  $38,750,000

2000 - 2012

55,329

31,825

$332,584,200

2013

5,533

  3,300

$39,000,000

34 Year Total

82,499

48,824

$414,000,000

Media Contact: Jackie Herskovitz jackie@pmc.org, 617-269-7171