File photo by Peter Hamlin

Editor’s note: The following is a press release from Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County. Bloom has republished it here with minor edits for style.

Bloomington resident Blayne Roeder rode his bicycle up Boltinghouse Road 84 times on Thursday, July 9 in preparation for a local fundraising challenge to raise support for Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County (HFHMC).

Although his bicycle ride was challenging in its own right, it is only one step along a bigger journey he and his friend and fellow cyclist Taylor Allen are planning this summer.  To raise awareness for HFHMC, Roeder and Allen and plan to climb the height of Mount Everest—29,029 feet—in one bicycle ride on August 15th. Through this feat, called Everesting (, the pair hope to raise $29,029—one dollar for every foot of their journey.

The idea for Everesting for Habitat was created during the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on local nonprofit organizations.  The vast majority of cycling events, including several that Roeder and Allen were training for, have been cancelled this year. Both cyclists still had the drive to do something to benefit their local community.

“Everything you read in the news has been focused on the devastation caused by COVID-19, the many healthcare workers sacrificing their wellbeing to care for patients, and the societal and financial impacts of the pandemic,” shared Roeder. “There was very little coverage of struggles of our local charitable organizations in Bloomington.”  

Bloomington is known as one of the best cycling communities in the country.  Unfortunately, it is also one of the least affordable places to live in Indiana. One in five, or 22% of residents, live in poverty and a person earning minimum wage must work 100 hours every week of the year to afford a two-bedroom apartment.

“We are so grateful that Blayne and Taylor have chosen to support Habitat in such a meaningful way.” said Colleen McKenna, Director of Development for HFHMC. “Their dedication and commitment to this significant challenge will have a long lasting impact on families in our community.”

“The response from friends, local businesses, and the community has been amazing,” said Roeder. “We committed to raising $29,029 for Habitat and we’re making great progress toward that goal.” said Roeder.  More details including ways to support this initiative can be found at: