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August 2004 Issue

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'Sunflower Revolution' Benefits Parkinson's Research

Published August 2004

The Davis Phinney Foundation's first annual Sunflower Revolution, a gala and bike ride benefiting Parkinson's disease research at UC's Neuroscience Institute, was a huge success.

The live and silent auctions alone raised more than $50,000 for the Davis Phinney - Donald Krumme Parkinson's research fund.

A bike donated by actor Robin Williams fetched $9,500. The Sunflower Revolution's $50,000 on-line raffle of Bicycling Magazine's "Dream Bike of 2004," a custom Serotta Ottrott with a special "Sunflower Revolution" finish, sold out. Scott Pleasants, of Greensboro, N.C., had the winning ticket.

Two-time Tour de France stage winner Davis Phinney, 45, diagnosed with Parkinson's at age 40, and his wife, Olympic gold medalist Connie Carpenter Phinney, were in town to help kick off the July 30 - 31 event.

The Friday night gala, held in a Westin Hotel ballroom bursting with sunflowers, was MC'd by WKRC's Rob Braun, and entertainment was provided by country music star Jo Dee Messina. Bike rides of 25 and 62 miles followed next day.

The Davis Phinney Foundation for Parkinson's Disease Research and Wellness was launched earlier this year by the Phinneys, who live in northern Italy, and Kathleen Krumme and David Ariosa, managers of Oakley Cycles.

John Tew, MD, medical director of The Neuroscience Institute, encouraged Ms. Krumme to keep money raised by the foundation in Cincinnati, rather than send it out of town. A meeting with Joseph Broderick, MD, chair of the Department of Neurology, and Kim Seroogy, PhD, director of the Selma Schottenstein Harris Laboratory, cemented the Davis Phinney Foundation's decision to further Parkinson's research at UC.

Impressed by everything he saw, Davis Phinney promised the event would return to Cincinnati next year.

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