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Lack of Funds Key in Bike Race Cancellation

Without a primary sponsor for the event, the Manayunk Bike Race looks done for 2013.

In a press conference Monday afternoon, Jane Lipton, the executive director of the Manayunk Development Corporation, said that a loss of primary sponsorship is the main factor in the cancelation of the 2013 Manayunk Bike Race.

"After speaking with [David Chaune, organizer for the Philadelphia International Cycling Championship] this morning, he told me that TD Bank did not decide to renew its sponsorship this year and that the do not have a lead sponsor," she said. "Tied to increased costs, you get an inability to have a race this year."

Lipton said that, while she was never privy to how much money TD bank put toward the race in years past, she estimated the cost to be "hundreds of thousands of dollars."

"I can't give a specific amount, but I know that the cost of city services, things like barriers and EMTs, has exploded into the $200k range," she said. "That's been a key issue we've been talking about for the last few years."

When reached for comment, Eric Springer, a representative for TD Bank, said that the company is "committed to Philadelphia."

"TD Bank is proud to have supported the Philadelphia International Cycling Championship for the past several years," he said. "We are proud to be involved in many of the things people love about Philadelphia, and will continue to support organizations, programs and events throughout the city."

Lipton said that the cost of city services has tripled in the last five years.

"I understand that there are costs for city serves and someone has to bare the expense, but I believe that [Chaune's] point with the city is … that this is [the city's] event," she said. "We see a huge bump in tourism. it's a big weekend and I would hate to see Philly lose its only international event."

Lipton said that she was "very surprised" at the news of the cancellation.

"I had no advanced notice this was coming," she said. "I was reading an email that [Chanue] had sent me this morning and I saw it on television like everyone else."

While Lipton said that 2013 appears to be "off the table," she was optimistic about the race's future in Manayunk and the possibility of doing something to supplement the race in 2013.

"If we can, we'll have a conversation right here [about doing something,]" she said. "Maybe we could do something small, a family event. Maybe our district will get together and remind everyone that Manayunk is a vital town. The Wall isn't going anywhere, you can still challenge yourself here."

Thomas Elliott January 22, 2013 at 03:01 PM
What does "the cost of city services has tripled in the last 5 years" mean? I understand that costs for events go up, but is there any explanation of how it has exploded like this?
M. McDonald January 22, 2013 at 03:24 PM
They are hiring so many cops for the race it is ridiculous. Last year there seemed to be about a thousand cops and liquor control officers walking around with absolutely nothing to do. I understand that they want to have a police presence at the race, but I'm guessing that's a big part of why the cost has gone up so much.
Mo January 22, 2013 at 03:45 PM
If I'm not mistaken- the fencing off of sidewalks along ENTIRE race route was implemented 3 years ago. We are further down on Manayunk Avenue and never had a fence til then! Fencing is an additional cost. It is a shame and I agree with J.Lipton... The city should support esp since its the only international event.
ML January 22, 2013 at 04:51 PM
Nate, if you need a proofreader, I'd be happy to connect you with one. It's becoming painful to read your stories, especially when you make errors in quotes and spell important names incorrectly.
ML January 22, 2013 at 05:11 PM
I'd imagine "bike court" wasn't cheap either. It's sad the city has to spend all this money just to keep an event like this under control. http://roxborough.patch.com/articles/combating-drunks-councilman-proposes-bike-court-at-manayunk-race

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