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Abdella’s 24hr Bike Ride

“ I thought he was nuts, but it was a great idea.”

On December 19, 2023, Mr. Abdella began his third annual marathon: a 24-hour bike ride circling the grounds of West Lauderdale High School. This challenge is to raise money for the WLHS band program. 

Regardless of the weather, Mr. Abdella’s resolve is true, met with equal enthusiasm from the community rallying around him. Students, organized in shifts, cheer him on with signs and unwavering support.

Emily Snodgrass, a senior in the WLHS band, shared her perspective on the atmosphere of the event, she commented: 

“I’d say the atmosphere is exciting, encouraging, and exhilarating. We know he is  doing this for us, so we do everything we can to make it as enjoyable for him as it can be, so we always have people out there cheering him on.”

When taking on an endurance challenge like this, Mr Abdella makes sure to maintain a certain speed, remain alert, and fight his subconscious. Cyclists refer to the hours of two or three in the morning as the “witching hours” He goes into further detail about this. Noting:

“These are the toughest times of the ride. These are the hours where your mind is trying to go to sleep. Where you start to hallucinate.  During the witching hours is where my mind starts to race; thinking things were there when they really aren’t.”

The sheer grit required to push through these “witching hours” is a testament to Mr. Abdella’s dedication. His willingness to face such a brutal challenge reflects just how much he believes in supporting the WLHS band program.

“I take on this ride every year because our band is the pride of our school; they are the best thing we have on campus”

The funds raised will go towards various things needed by the band during the year.  Paraphrasing WLHS band director Kristopher Grant, it is expensive to run a band program that includes sixth grade through twelfth grade, jazz band, percussion ensemble, and an entire marching season. This fundraiser provides a much-needed boost for the band.

Grant also invites the community to join in.

“Anyone can contribute to this effort,” he says. 

“Pledges are based on distance, and with  Mr. Abdella  predicted to ride about 400 miles by the end of the 24 hours, if you pledge ten cents per mile, your total pledge comes out to be forty dollars.”

As Mr. Abdella sets off on his challenge, students and teachers alike watch in support, knowing each lap brings the band closer to their goal. The community thanks him for his dedication and drive.

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Preston Wilson
Preston Wilson, Reporter
Hello, my name is Preston Wilson I am a reporter for the WLHS squire. I am so excited to share the stories and news of our school with all of the Squire’s readers.
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