Lone Star Ride kicks off new season

LSR team Slow Spokes (more photos from Sunday's party below)

Lone Star Ride Fighting AIDS kicked off the new season with a party at the new Irving Convention Center. LSR event manager Jerry Calumn announced new sponsors and fundraising tools, and handed out copies of the new route.

The two-day, 175-mile ride takes place the last weekend in September and benefits Resource Center Dallas, AIDS Services Dallas and AIDS Outreach Center.

The first day of this year’s ride begins in Irving and makes a 100-mile loop through Dallas. The second day, the ride heads through Arlington and Fort Worth.

A new corporate sponsor is Microsoft.

“Microsoft is invested in the community and diversity and helping people realize their full potential,” said Jeri Johnson, leader of Microsoft’s citizenship and public affairs outreach in the DFW area.

The LSR will ride out from Microsoft’s Irving campus.

“This is the first time we’ve hosted anything on this site,” she said. “We want to make a difference.”

Microsoft’s sponsorship will have an impact on the ride. She said the company is fielding a team of 50 riders. For the past few years, Dallas Voice has fielded the largest team, but Microsoft could present a challenge.

In addition to what those riders will raise, the company donates $17 an hour for volunteer time. As the team’s riders and additional volunteers participate, the contribution from the company will grow.

—  David Taffet