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Former Ambassador to Denmark Visits Solvang

Posted: Saturday, March 19, 2011

By: Laura Kath (Expired article)

Solvang, CA -

As part of the Solvang Centennial Celebration this year, an elite group of cycling enthusiasts visited Solvang this week to finalize their plans for the inaugural “Team Solvang 100” Charity Bike Ride (that will be arriving in Solvang on September 15, 2011). Pictured with the official “Team Solvang 100” bicycle are left to right: Former (2005-2009) US Ambassador to Denmark James Cain; Dennis Ritter, Danish TV-2 Sports Journalist; Solvang Mayor Jim Richardson; Merete Lund Brock and Hans Tjørnelund, the Bike Ride Co-Producers.

Mayor Richardson welcome the group at a private luncheon followed by a press conference and remarked that he was proud to have this group here to celebrate Centennial and promote the authentic cultural and historic links with Denmark. Ritter noted, “Solvang has the most perfect cycling terrain I’ve ever been on. It is the Tuscany of America.”

In 2008, Danish biking enthusiasts Hans Tjørnelund and Merete Lund Brock were involved in the former US Ambassador to Denmark James Cain’s 2,500km biking tour around Denmark to get to know the country and its people. Tour participants included ministers, royalty, business leaders and celebrities. Inspired by the success of Ambassador Cain’s tour, Hans & Merete proposed a similar event in California to celebrate Solvang’s Centennial in 2011—cycling from San Francisco to Solvang, arriving to attend Danish Days (September 16-18, 2011).

Former Ambassador Cain is riding in the 2011 tour and taking an active part in the planning process — hence his visit to Solvang this week with the ride producers. Current US Ambassador to Denmark Laurie Fulton has indicated her strong support of the bike ride and will greet the participants when they arrive in Solvang on September 15, 2011. (Ambassador Fulton just received the key to the city of Solvang from Tracy Farhad when Tracy was in Denmark last month.)

Each rider must contribute a minimum of US$4,000 to participate with proceeds donated to three charities: Doctors Without Borders; BorneCancerFonden (Children’s Cancer Foundation) and Julemaerkehs Jemmet (Danish Christmas Charity). More than 45 personalities have already pledged to participate in the ride. To learn more about the ride in Danish, visit

September 9, 2011	Arrival in San Francisco and check-in hotel.
September 10, 2011	Welcome luncheon and short bike ride to Sausalito
September 11, 2011	Begin in Sausalito & going over the Golden Gate Bridge and stop in Santa Cruz.
September 12, 2011	Highway 1 to Monterey and Carmel/17-mile Drive. Overnight Carmel.
September 13, 2011	Carmel to Big Sur along Highway 1 to Hearst Castle and overnight in San Simeon.                  
September 14, 2011	San Simeon to Pismo Beach and overnight there.
September 15, 2011	Pismo Beach to Solvang & Welcome Party in Solvang Park.

For more information on all Solvang Centennial events, see and

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