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For Immediate Release
Contact: Jenica Lancy
Director of Communications
(415) 967-2572     


The 2022 Central Coast Ride and Rally to Defeat ALS® Takes Another Step To Unlock Lou Gehrig’s Disease

The ALS Association Golden West Chapter hosts its inaugural Central Coast Ride and Rally to Defeat ALS on Saturday, September 17, 2022 at Bang the Drum Brewery in San Luis Obispo. People throughout the Chapter’s service area in Central California and beyond will join together to raise ALS awareness and funds in support of over 1800 families facing ALS served by the Golden West Chapter. At our rest stop at Biddle Park you’ll be welcomed by enthusiastic volunteers from the Cal Poly Women’s Soccer Team with food, water, and cheers of encouragement. Woodland Drive Music, who is a local cover band, will be the live entertainment for the brewery’s festivities. The public is invited to join this in-person community gathering for a family-friendly day in support of people living with ALS and their loved ones and in memory of those lost to this devastating disease. 

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, is a fatal, neurodegenerative disease that attacks nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. The average life expectancy of a person with ALS is two to five years from diagnosis. People with ALS lose their ability to move, speak, swallow and eventually the ability to breathe, while all five senses continue to function normally. ALS strikes women and men of all ages, and knows no racial, ethnic, or socioeconomic boundaries. Military veterans are approximately twice as likely to develop ALS as the general population. In the later stages of the disease, the annual costs for home care, coupled with the cost of necessary equipment can exceed $200,000 per year. At this time, there are no known cures for ALS.

The Golden West Chapter’s rides, walks, and rallies play an important role in our efforts to increase direct services and support to those living with the disease, their families, and caregivers throughout 31 counties in California and the state of Hawaii. Help us establish this new event as one that institutes regional care along with continued outreach into underserved communities. 

The Central Coast was a natural setting for team Mike Kennedy Surf Club to take root”, says Katey Kennedy, captain of the Central Coast Ride and Rally team.  “My brother Mike, Cal Poly Alum and huge bike rider, passed away from ALS in 2013, we were looking for a way to raise money in support of ALS families, and found the Napa Valley Ride. It was a perfect fit.  We started in 2013 with 13 riders and have grown in numbers and fundraising every year since. When the pandemic hit, we shifted to the Central Coast. We are excited to see this ride take off as we honor my brother and support all those battling this disease.”

The inaugural Central Coast Ride and Rally to Defeat ALS is an opportunity for the ALS community to gather in a show of support and unity and fuel the search for effective treatments and cures. “Because of the funds and awareness we raise through this Ride and Rally to Defeat ALS, we are able to ensure the ALS community is well-supported by our wraparound model of care, which extends length and quality of life, while we search for effective treatments and cures,” said Asher Garfinkel, Vice President of Community Outreach. “We work directly with families as well as research and government organizations to raise ALS awareness and support. The Central Coast Ride and Rally to Defeat ALS fuels these essential collaborative efforts. Join us on Saturday, September 17 to help ensure that no one is alone when facing this devastating disease. It is only together that we will defeat ALS.”

To learn more about the event or to register, please visit For more information about The ALS Association Golden West Chapter, please visit us at or email us at

About The ALS Association and The Golden West Chapter

The mission of The ALS Association is to lead the fight to treat and cure ALS through global research and nationwide advocacy while also empowering people with Lou Gehrig’s Disease and their families to live fuller lives by providing them with compassionate care and support. We are a member of the National Health Council and the only national organization solely dedicated to fighting ALS on all fronts while directly serving the ALS community. By leading the way in global research, providing assistance for people with ALS through a nationwide network of chapters, coordinating multidisciplinary care through certified clinical care centers, and fostering government partnerships, The ALS Association builds hope and enhances quality of life while aggressively searching for new treatments and a cure. The Golden West Chapter serves people with ALS and their families in the state of Hawaii and in 31 counties throughout California.