In March of this year, Rich and Becky Wolpert will be leaving their home in the Ozarks of Southwest Missouri and bicycling over 650 miles to the USITT Stage Expo in Houston, TX. The goal of the bike tour is to raise money for The ESTA Foundation's Behind the Scenes (and maybe lose a couple of pounds along the way). They will be riding the same tandem recumbent that they used during the AIDS Rides of the 1990s. Only this time they’re doing it on their own, without the logistical support of hundreds of volunteers.

The ESTA Foundation's Behind the Scenes program provides assistance to those in the industry who need financial help because of serious illness or injury. The Wolperts feel they have an obligation to help those who need assistance and their contribution is to do a physically demanding ride as a way to raise money. They are asking members of the industry to support this tour with donations. Placement of corporate logos on their bike jerseys and industry recognition is available to those who donate $250 or more. All who support them will receive a yellow tour shirt. See the online donation form for details.

Have a bike? Would you like to ride with the Wolperts? Even for just a day or two? The route will be on the backroads of Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas, passing the cities of Tulsa, Oklahoma City, and Dallas before ending at the convention center in Houston. The course is relatively flat and they will be staying in motels and colleagues’ homes along the way.

If you would like to take part in this, contact Rich Wolpert at 417-459-6142 or by email at