Business, Community, Tourism

Johnson named race director of Tour de Bloom

Wenatchee Valley Velo Club has hired Kari Johnson as race director of the annual Tour de Bloom cycling race.

Johnson was previously development director of the Mission Ridge Ski Education Foundation. She replaces former race director Ace Bollinger, who will now coordinate Tour de Bloom’s Leavenworth Stage Race.

“It’s an honor to be chosen for this position and to become integrally involved in such a longtime Wenatchee Valley event,” Johnson said. “One of my goals is to educate the community on the positive impacts Tour de Bloom has on visitor spending and charitable giving.

We have positioned ourselves well. Tour de Bloom has seen participation increase by about 15 percent annually over the past few years, at a time when other cycling races have shown less growth,” she said. “I’m looking forward to elevating the profile and impact of Tour de Bloom even more, while casting a positive light on our amazing outdoor recreation scene.”

Tour de Bloom is a three-day, four-stage event held the first weekend in May each year (May 5-7 in 2017). The stage races are held in the Leavenworth-Lake Wenatchee area, from Squilchuck State Park to Mission Ridge, in downtown Wenatchee, and on the Waterville Plateau. The race is owned and managed by Wenatchee Valley Velo, a nonprofit organization founded in the late

1990s. Funds raised from the event go to bicycle safety, advocacy and outreach programs in Chelan and Douglas counties.

As race director, Johnson will oversee all aspects of Tour de Bloom, including event management, community outreach, course set-up, marketing, and fund-raising.

Johnson served as development director of the Mission Ridge Ski Education Foundation from 2012 until this past October. From 2005 to 2012, she was human resource director and events coordinator at the Mission Ridge Ski Area. Johnson holds a bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology from Western Washington University.

Jerri Barkley