February 29, 2008 -- PORT MOODY, British Columbia - Peter Frouws of Port Moody, B.C., the man who completed a pan-Canada bicycle journey in ten weeks in 2006, has marked 2008 the year he will take on a one day challenge that would have Anne of Green Gables waxing a melodramatic narrative of poetic adventure.
On first glance, Frouws journey may appear a little anti-climatic: the man who conquered Canada by bicycle is now bicycling across Canada's smallest province, Prince Edward Island.
But make no mistake: this will be a lifetime challenge for Frouws.
P.E.I. offers Frouws something the Canada trek was unable to match: 278 kilometres in one day.
That's right: Frouws, at 54 years of age, this summer will bicycle the entire length of P.E.I. (278 km) in one single day - that is 100 kilometres further than he has bicycled in any day of his life.
The event Frouws is participating in is called the Biking for Breakfast Challenge (BFBC). BFBC is the largest fund-raising event for school breakfast programs in P.E.I. Organizers are expecting 115 riders from North America to join Frouws as he attempts to set a new lifetime high on August 2, 2008.
Frouws explains the BFBC is a match for this core values and beliefs.
"I see children coming to school on a regular basis without breakfast," he says.
"I see the affects of children not eating breakfast: in the classroom and on their faces."
Frouws is employed as an English as a Second Language Teacher in Burnaby, B.C.
With three adult children of his own, Frouws remembers how much it was a struggle to provide for his family and can relate to the hardships faced by today's families.
"I understand the pressures and the demands on families." he says.
"If I can do my little bit to help the children get a good start in life and lessen the stress on families then I feel I'm doing my small part."
Frouws explains this will be his second visit to sandy-beach P.E.I. His first visit was also by bicycle during his cross Canada trek. In addition to participating in Biking for Breakfast while in P.E.I., he will also be visiting his 10 month old granddaughter for the first time.
Frouws describes himself as a lifelong runner and it has only been since 1999 that he started bicycling on the road. Frouws recollects his first experience on a "road bike".
"It was so much more powerful," the then 45 year old thought to himself back then.
Frouws then grew enchanted with the power and speed that he could create by his own human-powered legs while using his road bike. The road bike soon become a staple in his 25 kilometre commute to work. He then started cycling century rides (100 kilometres) on the weekends.
Although he keeps up his running, Frouws returns to utilizing his two-wheeled human powered vehicle on an almost daily basis: "Bicycling offers you something you can't get jogging or walking - bicycling takes you places."
And, the bicycle will be taking Frouws to one more milestone this summer: the entire province of P.E.I. and his longest one-day bicycle ride of his life.
"I was looking for a good ride," Frouws laughs.
"And I guess I found it."
ABOUT Biking for Breakfast Challenge
The Biking for Breakfast Challenge is the only road cycling charity event in North America that travels across a complete province in one single day. This event is fully supported on rural country roads, some near traffic-free, alongside some of P.E.I.'s most gently touched landscape, farmer's fields, and always within minutes of one of P.E.I.'s five dozen sandy beaches. Riders can register for the entire tip to tip (278 km) or a various partial courses. More information can be found by visiting their website at www.bikingforbreakfast.com
BFBC By the Numbers
12: Number of school programs that have started since the inception of BFBC
16: Youngest Rider to complete full tip-to-tip event
25: Number of riders that participated in the first BFBC
43: Average age of the riders who have participated in past events
67: Oldest rider to complete full tip-to-tip event
115: Number of riders that are expected to participate in the 2008 BFBC
168: The dollars it takes to feed one child breakfast for a year in a school program
470: Number of minutes (saddle time) of the fastest rider to complete tip to tip event (7 hours 50 minutes)
710: Number of minutes (saddle time) of the last rider to complete tip to tip event (11 hours 50 minutes)
1,740: The amount of pledges raised by the highest pledge earner in 2007
2020: The year that BFBC is aiming to have a breakfast program in every single school on P.E.I. ("2020 Vision" Campaign)
14,933: Number of kilometres bicycled by all participants during 2007 event
33,184: Number of minutes in the saddle of all BFBC 2007 riders.
104,000: Number of pedal rotations starting at North Cape Lighthouse and ending at East Point Lighthouse
140,400: Number of calories burned by all riders in 2007 (based on 200 calories per hour)
246,641: Number of breakfasts served to children since the inception of BFBC