Ohio native Tom Helbig continued his 15,000 mile nation-encircling Tomfoolery Good Vibes Cycling Tour through Bowling Green this week on his campaign to encourage everyone to live out their dreams.
Helbig, who owns Tomfoolery Outdoors, is on the last leg of a 4000-plus miles journey which began in July at Neah Bay, Washington, crossing the northern states and ending in Lubec, Maine. He said he plans to end his trip in October so that he will have time to get back to Ohio to vote.
“This last leg will complete one big happy loop to remind us all that love and good vibes is all around,” he said on Tuesday after a lunch at Easy Street Cafe downtown.
Helbig said he uses social media storytelling to celebrate the “good vibes leaders in our country.” He added he wants this tour to be a megaphone for all good news.
Helbig, a Bowling Green State University graduate with a degree in sports management, said he has long been interested in inspiring people through adventurous activities. He worked nine years as a coach and coordinator with Special Olympics, then began a career in outdoor recreation with other organizations. In 2014 he began his own business.
He said he has so many stories of how kind people are.
“Sometimes I am blown away how much people care about what I am doing,” he said.
Helbig said he gets lots of questions as well as acts of kindness as he travels down back country roads.
“I sometimes travel where people don’t always see a cyclist going solo and loaded down with gear like I am,” he said “They ask lots of question, offer water, sometimes a meal or a place to stay.”
His biggest goal is to inspire those who wanted to do something they have dreamed about.
“For example, there was a woman I met in Northern California on my Pacific Coast ride,” he said.
Helbig said she saw him on his bike with all the gear and talked about how she used to love riding her bicycle. A bicycling accident had made her so anxious about riding again that she had not ridden in a long time.
“But she lit up with so much joy talking about the all the trips she had taken in the past,” he said. “You know, one week later she sent me a video of her back on her bicycle for the first time in 10 years.”
The tour began in the winter 2016, when he has first pedaled the southern route from San Diego to Key West, Florida. The ride resumed February 2018 in Key West where he traveled along the Atlantic Coast to Maine. Finally, last year, he completed the Western coast riding the Pacific Coast Highway from Neah Bay, Washington, to Tijuana, Mexico.
“I believe in people and the inherent goodness that lives in all of us. We can behave in a manner that divides or we can build community. I hope this long distance bicycle ride will play a role in bringing people together and celebrate the good vibes leaders in the world.”
The Tomfoolery Good Vibes Tour is an adventure advocacy initiative of Tomfoolery Outdoors.
Those interested can follow the journey at Tomfoolery Outdoors on social media. All links can be found at www.tomfooleryoutdoors.com.