Alfred University News

Alfred University ‘Reunion Bikers’ welcome new riders

The Alfred University “Reunion Bikers” is a group of alumni who spend the week preceding Reunion Weekend bicycling to Alfred.

The Alfred University “Reunion Bikers” is a group of alumni who spend the week preceding Reunion Weekend bicycling to Alfred. Join the group in a tradition that was started by a handful of adventurers from the class of 1958 who decided to bike from the Philadelphia area to Alfred University for their 40th reunion in 1998. They did it again for their 45th and 50th reunions choosing different routes in most years.

By 2010 the ride had become a tradition (and was opened up to other classes) and has continued each year since (except 2020, when Reunion was canceled due to COVID-19). Believe it or not, some of the 58’ers, as they have become known, still participate in parts of the ride.

The Reunion Bikers are pleased to welcome Terry Kiff ’84 from Sidney, NY; and Conor Walsh ‘02 and Ryan Harrington ’02 both from Corning, NY, on their first AU Reunion Bike Ride.  Terry and Conor are ceramic engineers. Ryan is a materials science and engineering major. Both Conor and Ryan work for Corning Glass and are returning for their 20th year reunion. Way to go engineers!

Veteran bikers including Russ Fahey ’58, Elliott Lasky ’58, Dave ’61 and Kate Perry, Larry ’68 and Denise ‘69 Ploetz, Mary Bouchard ’73, Birdy Auerbach’ 74, Steve Crandall ’77, David ’77 and Regina Holleb, and Jim Randall ’77 have signed on for this year’s ride.

The group has chosen Geneva, NY, as their peddle off point. Geneva is in the heart of the Finger Lakes at the north end of Seneca Lake.  The area was long occupied by the Seneca Indians, part of the Iroquois Federation of central New York. Geneva is now known for its tourist industry, particularly wine making and tours. The city also identifies as the “Lake Trout Capital of the World.” It is the home of Hobart and William Smith Colleges, a frequent opponent of Alfred University on the athletic field.   Famous sights include the Belhurst Castle and the historic row houses on the college campus overlooking Seneca Lake.     

The bikers will be traveling Saturday, June 4, to Geneva and spend three nights there before moving on to Mt. Morris, NY, for two nights (June 7 and 8).  Bike routes will include a 37-mile loop around Geneva, Phelps, and Gorham in Ontario County, and a 45-mile loop around Keuka Lake in Yates and Steuben counties.  Kara Mackey ‘88 and Joe Sorrentino ‘83 will be hosting a visit to their distillery, Barrelhouse 6 Distillery, in Hammondsport on the Keuka Lake loop ride.  While in Mt. Morris the cyclists will tackle the challenging Park Road in Letchworth State Park. A white water rafting trip is also planned along the Genesee River in the park gorge. The reunion bikers move on to the Best Western Maple City Inn, in Hornell, NY, Thursday night, June 9.  On Friday morning, June 10, the group will celebrate with their “Victory Ride” into Alfred with an anticipated arrival at the King Alfred Statue at high noon.

We welcome students, alumni and friends to join us as we ride through your local area, or for part or all of our trip. We also enjoy having lunch or dinner with friends of the University throughout our travels.  Stay tuned for updates every few weeks. Please email Jim Randall ’77 for additional information.