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Pedalling toward healthy living

TRURO - Tyler Rogers was introduced to the Heartland Tour three years ago.

Tyler Rogers of Truro is one of 30 Heartland Tour core team members. Beginning this weekend, Rogers will travel with the team throughout Nova Scotia and bike in many communities to raise awareness about cardiac and general health risks.

It was then that he rode as a participant in the cycling event that raises public awareness and educates Nova Scotians about cardiac and general health risks.

Last year, Rogers became a member of the provincial core team of cyclists that took part in community rides throughout Nova Scotia. Beginning this weekend, Rogers will strap on his helmet once again and begin the seven-community tour, which includes a stop in Truro on Sunday.

"It's really a fun event, it's a great group of people on the core team and Truro's one of the better turnouts for the province ... it's just a fun day," said Rogers, a Truro resident.

In addition to 30 core team riders, the cycling public is invited to take part in the Heartland Tour.

The Truro leg of the tour begins at 9:30 a.m. on Inglis Place, where cyclists will leave for rides of either 19 or 52 kilometres that finish in Victoria Park. The rides are open to everyone, regardless of age or skill level.

"I call it a community group ride wherever we go and it's always a very welcoming and very fun experience for anybody – riders of all levels," said Rogers.

Rogers, who is also the Heartland Tour's webmaster, will ride in five communities this year, and will shoot promotional video for the group when he's not cycling.

"It's a great way to spend a week," said the 36-year-old.

The Heartland Tour is entering its ninth year. Raj Makkar is the Truro co-ordinator for the event and looks forward to helping spread the word on healthy living.

"It's to promote a healthy lifestyle for kids, youth, teenagers, adults, everyone, through cycling," he said.

"The whole key behind it is to have as many riders from the public take part in the ride."

Registration for the Heartland Tour Truro ride can be done by visiting . Makkar said more than 70 cyclists have already signed up for the Truro event and he's encouraging more to do the same.

In addition to biking, Victoria Park will host a free Heartland Tour fun-filled day on Sunday to promote healthy living. There will be additional group bike rides, face painting for kids, food, bike draws and other giveaways. Entertainment at the band shell will be provided by Blue Motel – a jazz ensemble from Cobequid Educational Centre.

Festivities at Victoria Park are scheduled from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Twitter: tdnJoey

Heartland Tour Truro rides

19 km - Salmon River, Valley, Brookside and back to Victoria Park

52 km - Old Barns, Beaverbrook, Greens Creek, Pleasant Valley and Brookfield. Highway 2 from Brookfield to Truro to Victoria Park.

Heartland Tour schedule

July 4 - Halifax

July 5 - Truro

July 6 - Sydney

July 7 - Antigonish

July 8 - New Glasgow/Pictou County

July 9 - Bridgewater

July 10 - Yarmouth



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