The 14th Annual Tour de Brazos Valley, the Bush School’s yearly bike ride, took place on November 10. The twenty-mile ride began at 8 a.m., with a hardy group of students, faculty, and special friends meeting at the Hollywood Cinema on Earl Rudder Freeway. Esteemed faculty, including Dr. Charles Hermann, Dr. Lorraine Eden, and Professor Jim Olson, rode with some thirty Bush School students, promising “…to honestly do their best not to set too fast a pace.” First and second year students from both the Master’s Program in International Affairs and the Master of Public Service and Administration took part.
Organized each year by Professor Olson, who is an avid cyclist, the ride is a longstanding tradition at the Bush School and according to him is “one of the most exciting events of the Bush School’s social and athletic calendars.” A Bush School van followed the riders, providing “SAG service” (mechanical/medical assistance) and other support. “The Tour is a highlight of the fall semester and always enjoyed by all who participate,” Olson said.
Originally a forty-five-mile trek to Navasota, the Tour route now goes from the Hollywood Cinema to Messina Hof Winery, where riders enjoy wine tasting and light snacks, before the second half of the ride takes them through the Brazos Valley countryside. The riders stop again at C&J Barbeque for a break, time with friends, and some Texas barbeque, and then circle back to the theater. In addition to students and faculty, special guests over the years have included several Bush School deans, including Dean Andrew Card, who participated in last year’s ride. “The event is a great opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to get acquainted,” Professor Olson said. “I have been a biker for many years and wanted to share that with the Bush School community.”