If you live on Long Island and have ever cranked up the radio, chances are, you’ve heard DJ Syke on 106.1 BLI or 102.3 WBAB. He’s the host of the morning show, playing the top 40 hits that get everyone moving to start their day. He’s a staple in his community, loves his listeners and is always up for new experiences. But did you know he’s also an advocate in the fight to end cancer? This year, DJ Syke will be back in the saddle for the second annual Empire State Ride Long Island!
We sat down with DJ Syke to hear his story. Check it out:
What inspired you to get involved with Empire State Ride Long Island?
As a DJ, I have a platform I can use for good, and I want to use it for as much good as I can. Anytime there are charity events or fundraising opportunities, specifically for cancer research, I look to do as much as I can. My sister-in-law passed away from colon cancer a few years ago. She left behind two kids. From that point on, I said, ‘I want to do everything I can to get involved with that community, to give back and raise as much money as I can.’
How do you think your sister-in-law would feel about you participating in Empire State Ride Long Island?
She would love this. If she were here, she would be doing it with me. She would be the person who would bring this event to me and be like, ‘Oh, there’s a really cool bike ride you should take part in.’ And even if she didn’t know anybody with cancer or have any connection to the disease, she’d be out there raising money for people — that’s just who she was. She was very community-oriented and always wanted to instill that in her girls, too.
How does it feel to know your efforts are directly supporting cancer care and research?
We’re doing some good, and we’re raising money for an incredible cause. I’m super proud to be a part of it and to help in any way that I can.
Are you pretty good on a bike?
I’m not an avid cyclist. I know how to ride a bike and avoid falling over, and that’s pretty much my experience. But I love getting out there and just breathing fresh air and taking in the sites and scenery. When I can get out there and ride and be with my own thoughts, it just decompresses me.
You did Empire State Ride Long Island last year. What’s the best part?
It’s a great day out with your family! What kid doesn’t love to ride their bike? And I think parents sometimes forget how fun it is to ride a bike. Every time I get back on mine, I think, ‘Wow, this really is the most fun activity out there.’ It’s easier than running, and it’s a big old party afterward with everyone in the park hanging out.
What was your favorite part of the 10-mile route last year?
Going over the water right at the beginning when you have that narrow bridge. You’re going across it, and you see these beautiful homes. It was such a nice day weather-wise, and the scenery and setting were perfect for a ride. I don’t really know if they could have done a better job of finding a location for it than Oyster Bay.
What advice do you have for anyone who’s nervous about doing a cycling event?
I’m a big fan of advising people to take risks and do different things. Sometimes when you get out of your comfort zone, the most rewarding experiences happen in life. There are so many different options for people doing Empire State Ride Long Island, and there is something for everybody.
Any last thoughts?
Come down to the event and see what it’s all about. Empire State Ride Long Island is diverse. It is inclusive. Everybody is going to have a great time.
Join DJ Syke on July 23 for the summer event you do not want to miss!