Our Community Cares: Grant & Maxx’s Story

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Maxx does an extra lap in a speedo after reaching his fundraising goal for EFAA.

Grant and Maxx are cyclists with Blue Stage Cycling who wanted to use their passion for riding bikes to help people impacted financially by the coronavirus. By leveraging their networks and getting creative, they were able to raise over $6,000 for EFAA!

Here’s how they did it and what advice they would give to others looking to do the same:

Q: How did you come up with the idea to do this fundraiser for EFAA?

Maxx: Basically with the whole pandemic and everything being cancelled, we wanted to do something that would benefit the community and engage the people we normally would engage with. We came up with the idea to ride 125 miles on different cycling disciplines to try to encourage people to donate. Grant rode the trainer, I rode my single speed mountain bike, and Eric decided to “Everest”, which is riding the same course until you hit 29,029 feet.

Grant: I broke my collarbone in August so I had been spending a lot of time on the trainer. I decided the best way was the way that I have been doing everything. I used an app called Zwift, which you connect to your trainer and it acts as if you are on a road. . It’s almost set up as a game. We all started making little side bets and side challenges, like if we got to a certain amount of money I would raise my weight on my trainer which would make it harder to ride. After we reached $3,000, I started adding ten pounds for every hundred dollars more we raised. Then we made a side bet that if met our goal, Maxx would do an extra lap in a speedo.

Q: Why did you choose EFAA for your fundraiser?

Grant: We talked a little bit about what we wanted to do and I came up with the idea of doing the fundraiser. I think there has always been a bit of a disconnect in Boulder, and people forget that there are people who need help. We ride by EFAA all of the time. Me and my wife have taken food over to the food bank. I thought it would be very poignant and a good time and place to do the fundraisers, and that it would not only help people out but bring some exposure that there are those problems in our community.

Maxx: Growing up in Boulder, EFAA has always been the first charity and organization that I was aware of from a young age because I used to live by the old office on 9th and Arapahoe. My family and I have always had a long relationship with EFAA. Doing something that had a direct impact on the local community was important to us and EFAA seemed like a natural fit.

Q: What was your favorite part of the fundraiser?

Maxx: My favorite part was the amount of support that we received. I was definitely impressed by the community, not just in Boulder, not just in cycling, but everyone in our circles came out to support what we were trying to do. I was impressed by how much it always feels good to make a big enough impact with a charity with something you are able to do. Doing 200 kilometers was fun, but being able to raise over $6,000 for EFAA was the best part.

Grant: When you do these fundraisers on social media, there is a lot of engagement a lot of back and forth which is really great. We were posting a lot of stuff on Instagram along the way, and we got all of these messages from people, some that we haven’t even spoken to in a long time. It was a lot of fun.

Q: What advice would you give to other people looking to raise money for EFAA?

Grant: I would encourage people to make it a big part of who they are for that period of time. I think social media is a great place to spread the word, but you have to be willing to talk about it a lot. Make it your job for a week. Take the time to reach out to people, remind people who you know wanted to donate, and make it something that is important to you. The expectation is that it will happen on its own, but upping the ante with the little side bets goes a long way and it keeps people engaged and excited about the progress

Maxx: I think picking something that is unique to you and unique to the people that you know helps you engage your own community. It’s better to find people who are already big supporters of you and the fundraiser you are doing rather than trying to find support through the broader community. It helps make a bigger impact, it makes it more fun, and it raises more money.

Feeling inspired? Start your own fundraiser for EFAA by visiting efaa.org/cares during the month of September!