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Tourism prize: Find special, hidden bike – and keep it


“Riding” the “coattrails” of the hugely successful 7 Wonders of Oregon campaign, the Central Oregon Visitors Association is partnering with Travel Oregon on a new, unique marketing effort to showcase the Wonders and two of the state’s passions: cycling and art.

Travel Oregon has commissioned seven of the state’s most creative and innovative bicycle builders to build custom, one-of-a-kind bikes to go along with state’s 7 Wonders. The bicycles will then be stashed somewhere within each of the 7 Wonders of Oregon for visitors to find, own and ride.

Two Bend bike builders are part of the project. The “Smith Rocket” was designed by Wade Beauchamp of Vulture Cycles, while Ben Farver of Argonaut Cycles created the bicycle for the Columbia River Gorge.

How sought after will the bikes be? Farver’s custom-built bikes typically go for more than $9,000.

A statewide scavenger hunt will happen throughout the summer. Travel Oregon and the regional destination marketing organizations, such as COVA, will use social media to talk more about the bikes, introduce followers to the local bike builders and provide clues to when and where the bikes will be stashed.

The first clue is to help visitors plan their trip: The Smith Rock bike will be hidden the week of June 22 nd .

All people have to do is follow the clues and visit the 7 Wonders to win. Find the bike – and it’s yours. It’s that simple.

“This is the perfect way to highlight Oregon’s 7 Wonders, in particular Smith Rock State Park where cycling is such a great way to experience the destination,” said COVA CEO Alana Hughson.

“It’s a thrill to work with Travel Oregon and showcase creative local bike builders on this project. We’re certain Central Oregon fans and visitors will watch closely for clues because this custom, one-of-a-kind bicycle is worth searching for.”

Bicycle-related tourism generated more than $400 million in 2012, according to a Dean Runyon economic impact report. That number is projected to increase as Travel Oregon and COVA continue to market Central Oregon’s unique scenic bikeways and world-class mountain biking.

Other locations include the Painted Hills, the Wallowas, Mt. Hood, the Oregon coast and the Columbia River Gorge.

For more information (and clues, starting June 15th), visit:

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