Route 66 Ride for Literacy with Dan O’Rourke

The National Federation of the Blind is excited to partner with Dan O’Rourke for a journey of strength, dedication, and connection. 

Watch the recording of the finale.

Dan O'Rourke and Mark Riccobono smile warmly toward each other as they shake hands firmly

This Summer: Dan rode from Santa Monica, California, to Chicago, Illinois, along the famous Route 66 to raise awareness of our mission of raising expectations. 

The pedals started turning in July. Learn about the rider, the cause, and the ways to support.

We celebrated the completion of the 2,700-mile bike ride along Route 66 taken by Dan O’Rourke to bring awareness and funding to the National Federation of the Blind on September 8 in Chicago. The Ride for Literacy has, so far, raised more than $47,000 and generated press coverage helping to spread our message about the capacity of blind people. Help us reach our 50,000 dollar goal–please contribute today.”

Dan smiles in NHL Referee gear; background shows Dan riding a bike

Route Completed:

Days 1-6: Santa Monica, CA to Kingman, AZ, 371 miles
Days 7-12: Kingman, AZ to Ramah, NM, 355 miles
Days 13-20: Ramah, NM to Adrian, TX, 468 miles
Days 21-24: Adrian, TX to Elk City, OK, 198 miles
Days 25-30: Elk City, OK to Joplin, MO, 351 miles
Days 31-37: Joplin, MO to Farmersville, IL, 364 miles
Days 38-42, Farmersville, IL to Chicago, IL, 255 miles

Dan stands with bike in front of a brick building displaying a large Route 66 sign in Illinois

About the Ref

Dan O’Rourke has been an on-ice official for the National Hockey League (NHL) since 1999. After growing up watching his blind father defeat all obstacles in his path, Dan wants to give back to the organization that further empowers blind people to live the lives they want. Get to know Dan.

About the Federation

The National Federation of the Blind is the transformative membership organization of blind people. Established in 1940, this organized blind movement promotes equality, security, and opportunity for all blind people. We know that blindness is not the characteristic that defines you or your future. Every day, we raise the expectations of blind people, because low expectations create obstacles between blind people and our dreams. You can live the life you want; blindness is not what holds you back. 

We are the only organization that believes in the full capacity of blind people and that has the power to transform our dreams into reality. We believe in blind people because we are blind people. 

Pit-Stop Parties

Dan stands with his bike at the center surrounded by nine NFB members with white canes and a guide dog

We had eight pit stop parties along the way. Check out our Facebook page for more details and photos from the stops!

How to Contribute

Dan sits on the floor and talks with NFB Camp kids at conventionTogether, we can all make a difference. This ride supports a community that creates a future full of opportunities for blind people. While Dan bikes across the country to connect and to promote our mission, please support this effort with a contribution to the organized blind movement via the following:

  • Give online!
  • Give via phone by calling our donation line at 410-659-9314, extension 2430.
  • Send a check to National Federation of the Blind Attention: Outreach, 200 East Wells Street Baltimore, MD 21230. Write “Ride for Literacy" in the memo. 

Thank you!

Dan O'Rourke and Mark Riccobono smile together and both are holding an NFB member coin that has TGR in BrailleThank you for your support! When you support the National Federation of the Blind, you help with early childhood initiatives, free white cane distribution, the NFB BELL® Academy, STEM programs for blind students, membership-building, leadership training, student seminars, development of new technologies, our Center for Excellence in Nonvisual Access (CENA), teacher training programs, conventions, employment readiness, career fairs, assistance to people whose eyesight is changing, and so much more.