PISEK, North Dakota – If you might be into bicycling or racing – or just hunting for some family fun – you must head to Pisek, N.D., this weekend.
The small Walsh County town, about 50 miles northwest of Grand Forks, is hosting the 2nd Yearly Nepomuk Narly on Saturday, July 23. It’s a “gravel grinder race/ride with road fair” that is shaping up to be a memorable celebration – for cyclists and non-cyclists alike, organizers say.
The celebration features 15-, 40- and 100-mile competitive races. In an additional run, the Six-Mile Ice Product Loop, three miles up and back down a hill, “if you complete, you get an ice product cone,” mentioned the Reverend Jason Lefor, who released the event very last 12 months. About 120 young children and moms and dads participated in that operate, which is “perfect for riders of all ability stages households are welcomed.”
Just about $20,000 in hard cash and door prizes will be awarded, Lefor explained. The 100-Mile Pro Platinum race winner will acquire household $10,000.
To sign-up for the race, or for extra information, go to
. Individuals who indicator up to volunteer at the event “will obtain our well known Nepomuk Narly t-shirt for cost-free,” he reported. Any individual who would like to have a booth – these kinds of as quilters or artists – at the avenue fair might get in touch with Lefor at (701) 520-0369.
The event attracts its identify from John Nepomucene, the patron saint of the Catholic church in Pisek, who was born about 1340 in Nepomuk, a Czech Republic metropolis recognized for its gravel.
Gravel cycling “is all the rage correct now,” Lefor reported. The third-rated cyclist in the planet is setting up to contend “and carry a movie crew with him” to Pisek. The world’s seventh-rated cyclist and the top rated South Dakota bicycle owner are also predicted.
But the party is extra than a contest in between bicyclists, explained Lefor, 52, parish priest for St. John Nepomucene Catholic Church in Pisek, as effectively as parishes in Lankin and Bechyne. “It’s all about existence, family members, fun, competitiveness and fellowship.
“We’re striving to provide everyday living to our compact neighborhood,” he stated. “We want to give everyone in the planet a purpose – just one day of the 12 months – to appear to Pisek, North Dakota.”
The competition is a way to capitalize on a burgeoning enthusiasm between cyclists nationwide who look for out gravel roadways to race on with bikes equipped with much larger tires.
Comparable races have grown in popularity in states these kinds of as Kansas and Oklahoma, Lefor claimed. “We have greater gravel streets right here. We have the very best gravel roadways in the entire world.”
Lefor and other organizers are hoping that Canadians much too will take a look at this little town – inhabitants: about 120 – for the party, which will also feature things to do for persons of all ages, including a street honest, food items vans, youngsters games and educate rides, are living tunes and a bonfire, he explained.
“We’ll have cotton candy, snow cones, all sorts of very good stuff,” explained Lefor, noting that classic Czech food items, beloved by immigrants – numerous from Pisek, Czechoslovakia – who settled this place in the late 1800s, will also be served.
Fargo-based bands “Stella!,” with Grand Forks drummer Dave Jeffrey, and “The JT Kennelly Band” will conduct Friday and Saturday, respectively, Lefor claimed.
The initially Nepomuk Narly was held in Pisek in 2021.
“It was a leap of religion,” Lefor mentioned, and interest in this year’s race has been making, fueled by social media publicity.
Previous year’s event captivated a cyclist from Russia, who won the 100-Mile Pro Platinum race, and about 150 other racers, like some from Virginia, Colorado, and Vancouver, British Columbia, Lefor reported.
Organizers were encouraged by previous year’s contributors who mentioned, “Wow, this is the biggest bike race we’ve at any time been portion of,” he recalled. “I credit history the locals” who supported the idea and manufactured the race a reality.
This calendar year, about 65 neighborhood corporations have contributed, such as a “big sponsor,” Francis Jelinek, operator of the J-Mart, who “has decked out the full store” for the celebration, Lefor claimed.
Childhood fascination in racing
Lefor has been intrigued in bicycling because childhood, he reported. “I was often into it as a child.”
As a UND scholar in the early ‘90s, he began a cycling crew. He used to race competitively and owned a bicycle store in Oregon in advance of getting into the seminary, claimed Lefor, who was ordained in 1999. He is in his sixth year a religious leader of the three space parishes.
The total Pisek neighborhood is gearing up for the races, which will be held “rain or glow,” but could be shortened, delayed or canceled if intense weather conditions disorders or a public crisis deem it unsafe, he mentioned.
“If you simply cannot show up at this year’s event, remember to click on on
to boost website site visitors to enable endorse our occasion,” he mentioned in an email to the Herald.
He’s excited about the occasion as perfectly as the publish-race social gathering when racers and other individuals can “relive the adventure with buddies aged and new, although having fun with good local food and drinks,” he mentioned in a web-site article. “We cannot wait around to hang out with you in little-city North Dakota!”
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