Hope Ride raising money for families battling cancer

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The American Cancer Society's Hope Lodge provides patients from all over the country who go through treatment in Grand Rapids a home away from home at no cost.

But they can't do it without the generosity of local families through the Gears and Cheers Hope Ride.

"It gives you hope, It gives you hope. And that we're not alone," says Amy Butler, who's staying at the Hope Lodge while she does clinical trail to battle colon cancer.

She and her husband, Tim, are part  of one of many families staying at the hope lodge off Jefferson Avenue, a home away from home while patients battle cancer.

It costs $50 a night for a patient to stay there, which is covered by money raised through the Hope Ride.

"It makes you cry, to know that you're giving them some hope and that they can concentrate on getting better instead of worrying about where they're going to stay the next time they have to have chemo," says Hope Rider Michael Brown.

Gears and Cheers helps raise the $500,000 needed to keep the lodge running.

When it started three years ago, Brown was one the first riders to sign up.

"When you see everybody crossing the finish line together you think about what a wonderful thing we're doing for people that have had cancer," Brown says.

The Hope Lodge is now hoping to raise more than $60,000 for cancer patients and their families.

"That will be over 10,000 nights that we're able to provide for cancer patients," says the Hope Lodge's Sarah Mariuz.

Giving them a place of peace and community while going through a tough time.

"That's the amazing part of the Hope Lodge," Tim and Amy tell FOX17.

Gears and Cheers Hope Ride starts at 8 a.m. on Saturday Sept. 21 at Trail Point Brewing Company. If you'd like to participate, donate, or find out more about the Hope Lodge click here and to find out how to donate click here.

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