My version (please no editing for factual accuracy) of the Lone Star Ride Fighting AIDS

DV Classified Account Manager Chance Browning, right, in his business casual attire at Day 2 Pit 2 at Station 4.

The total amount of money raised for AIDS organizations has now topped $2 million in the 11 years of the Lone Star Ride Fighting AIDS. The Ride supports AID Services Dallas, Resource Center Dallas and the AIDS Outreach Center. That’s the important thing. All the rest is just plain fun — and physically and emotionally draining.

The first day of LSR, riders made a loop from the American Airlines Training and Conference Center just south of D/FW Airport through Fort Worth and back. Riders had a choice of routes up to 100 miles. However, most — including me — chose to make their own route. Or got lost.

About 22 miles of the Fort Worth route was along the Trinity Trails, which follow the course of the streams that flow into the Trinity River and the main fork that flows through Downtown Fort Worth. The trail is not one continuous route and more than 40 riders reported going off-course without street signs or clearly identifiable landmarks along the way to indicate where to turn or cross the river.

My riding partner Shelly Morrow and I rode to the end of a wrong trail, carried our bikes over a guard rail, over a bridge down an embankment and continued down another trail — before realizing the river was flowing in the wrong direction. We knew we needed to be near Downtown Fort Worth for the lunch pitstop. So we turned around, made some frantic but unanswered calls, had a flat and a broken spoke, fought off snakes, scorpions, alligators and other critters indigenous to the wilds of Fort Worth, survived the intense sun and brutal heat, a wind storm and finally, 100 miles later, after seeing most of the Trinity Trails, some of it twice, made it into lunch, bruised and battered — and dead last.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that. It’s a ride, not a race. And the Trinity Trail is very scenic — even if it’s not all paved.

—  David Taffet

Lone Star Riders will put on their own Parade of Lights between Hurst and Fort Worth on Friday

Fort Worth’s Parade of Lights and Christmas Tree Lighting are the Friday after Thanksgiving (which the folks and I learned the hard way when we tried to hit Cowtown for dinner last year). And now that I think about it, it would have been much, much easier to get to Sundance Square on a bicycle — which is just what some pedalers from the Lone Star Ride intend to do. According to the below e-mail, the riders will light their bikes and decorate their bodies for a 20-mile jaunt from Hurst to downtown. In case you’re wondering, the forecast calls for a high of 52, but maybe the lights will keep them warm. Here’s the info:

Let’s go for a ride to the Fort Worth Parade of Lights!

When – Friday, Nov 26, 2:30pm – until you want to go home

Where – Start from Hurst/Bell Trinity Railway Express Station or NRH TRE station or anywhere on route

Details – Light your bike, decorate your body and let’s ride and have some fun!  We’ll ride to Fort Worth via Trinity Blvd, Randol Mill and Trinity Trail ( about 20 miles?) to watch the Parade of Lights and lighting of Fort Worth’s Christmas tree. You can ride out and ride back to Hurst, you can take the TRE back to Hurst ( if you leave by 9:40pm) you can invite family and friends to meet you in Fort Worth and bum a ride home, or there may be a  possibility of taking the bus ( The Green Weenie II ) back to Hurst. After the parade we can find food and drinks before we head home – your return plans will dictate how much time you have to party before you start back. Bring lights, lock, camera, cash, warm clothes, walkable footwear.

For more info, call Ray Allen at 817-300-8580 or e-mail Mrayallen@aol.com.

—  John Wright