Watertown man bikes entire east coast in 51 days to raise money for local theater company

ABC50 NOW

Pedal With a Purpose, Chris Stowell
Left to right: April 1, Key West, Florida; June 7, Calais, Maine

WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — The campaign, Pedal With a Purpose, has marked its over three-thousand mile completion.

The campaign launched and led by Chris Stowell, from Watertown, New York, aimed to give back to organization that helped start his career in the performing arts industry.

Back in March, ABC50 spoke with Stowell, on this campaign, but since then, has gained support for this campaign that spans thousands of miles.

In 51 days, from April 1 to June 7, Stowell biked the entire east coast of the United States, along the East Coast Greenway. Equivalent to 3,047 miles, the route began in Key West, Florida and ended in Calais, Maine.

This ride was completed all while raising money to support the Watertown-based theater company Stage Notes.

The company Stage Notes, follows the motto “performance with a purpose,” as it has produced 14 musicals and donated over $50,000 to local organizations. This motto is what inspired Stowell’s campaign name.

Chris Stowell is considered an “original Stage Note,” as he helped Stage Notes Artistic Director Ticia Marra during the company’s earliest days, and was in some of the first productions. He now is a professional theater designer and electrician, and worked in the theater industry in New York City prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The reason I decided to be a designer and electrician in New York City was because of the influence Stage Notes had on me,” shared Stowell. “So when the theatre world turned off its lights, I knew I had to figure out how to give back to Stage Notes during this troubling time. Stage Notes gives back to their community and this is how I want to give back to them.”

“Stage Notes salutes Chris and thanks him for giving back to the organization that he says ‘helped make him the person he is today,'” expressed Marra. “We would not be the organization we are without him and his fellow alumni.”

Stowell will be announcing the amount raise for Stage Notes in the coming weeks. The donation button on his website will remain active for a few additional days.

Watch the full interview with Stowell back in March 2021.

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