Second annual JOYride in Asheville to honor local advocate Laurey Masterton

Press release

From YMCA of Western North Carolina:

Laurey Masterton, long-time local activist and founder of the JOYride, passed away on February 18th, just shy of her 60th birthday. According to her sister, Heather Masterton, “a huge factor in Laurey’s treatment cycle, her emotional and personal courage and perseverance, was the great gift that she received from LIVESTRONG at the YMCA. We invite the community to join us at Carrier Park in Asheville on Saturday, May 17th beginning at 1:00 pm, for the second annual JOYride to honor Laurey’s memory, and to support a cause she was so deeply committed to.” Registration opens at 10 am, individuals and families are encouraged to participate, even if only “InSpirit,” for those not able to ride on the day of the event. The event promises food, fun, music and more to celebrate the ride and survivors everywhere.

‘This is a family-friendly Asheville-area cycling event created by Laurey to raise scholarship funds to enable individuals to participate in LIVESTRONG at the YMCA,” said Rachel Dudasik, Program Coordinator. “This program has touched the lives of many and we look forward to expanding its outreach this year, enhancing program quality, and ensuring long-term sustainability,” Dudasik said.

Entry categories include: “Fun” ride (for children) at Carrier Park track led by Olympic Silver Medalist, Lauren Tamayo, Quarter century (25 mile), Half century (50 mile), and new this year, 125 km ride in honor of the 125th anniversary of the YMCA of Western North Carolina. The event is designed for bikers of all ages and abilities. All routes will begin and end at Carrier Park and follow along the scenic French Broad River.

The local LIVESTRONG at the YMCA program operates under the YMCA of Western North Carolina and is currently offered at five locations throughout Buncombe, Henderson, and McDowell counties. It is a free 12-week program for small groups, led by staff specially trained in the physical and emotional needs of cancer survivors who are de-conditioned or chronically fatigued from their treatment and/or disease. Funded locally, the program is offered at no cost to the participant, and includes a 3-month family membership to the Y for them and their support system.

Many people know Masterton’s motto, ‘Don’t Postpone Joy,’ and this event was created as a fun way to support the survivorship program that helped her along her journey. With close to 200 survivors on the list prior to the Inaugural JOYride, Masterton’s goal was to raise enough funding for 100 survivors to participate in the program. Thanks to the $30,000 raised by last year’s JOYride, in addition to some new funding from Mission Health System and Pardee Hospital Foundation, the program has been able to more than double in size, dramatically decreasing the waitlist.

The registration fee for Fun ride, designed for kids, is $5.15, and the Quarter Century, Half Century, and the 125km rides, designed for road riders, is $51.50 (registration includes JOYride t-shirt). The “InSPIRIT” ride is designed for those would like to participate in raising funds to support the program but choose not to physically ride. All funds are earmarked to underwrite LIVESTRONG at the YMCA. Registration fees reflect the theme of $515, the cost of sending one person through LIVESTRONG at the YMCA. For more information on the JOYride or LIVESTRONG at the YMCA contact Rachel Dudasik at or 210-9607.

The YMCA of Western North Carolina is one of the area’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. The Y serves Buncombe, Henderson and McDowell Counties with five Y centers, 21 elementary age afterschool sites and four 21st Century middle school age afterschool sites; engaging over 61,000 families, neighbors and children. Regardless of age, income or background our goal is to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the area’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support the community. Deeply anchored in Western North Carolina, the Y has a 125 year history that allows us to not just promise, but deliver lasting personal and social change.

About Lea McLellan
Lea McLellan is a freelance writer who likes to write stories about music, art, food, wellness and interesting locals doing interesting things.

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