Power to the Purple raises awareness for mental wellness

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. - A 200 plus mile bike tour has brought attention to the problem of teenage suicide and is spreading the message that there's nothing wrong with being different.

The Mental Health Association of the Southern Tier hosted its Power to the Purple event on Monday.

Association Executive Director Keith Leahey along with his riding partner Ken Weir embarked on a 212 mile bike ride that began in Connecticut and ended in Binghamton.

The tour was aimed to raise awareness for mental wellness for young people.

Leahey said they hit a few roadblocks but kept on pedaling.    

"We broke it up over four days. It was great until we hit the Catskill mountains and the other mountain ranges after that so it was kind of slow but it was a beautiful ride and a great time," said Leahey.

MHAST also hosted a reception headlined by spoken word artist Fable the Poet.

Fable was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder, depression and anxiety when he was 14 and turned to writing as an outlet.

He's written a book of poems that range from stories of struggle to uplifting messages of hope.

Fable said people shouldn't aim to be ordinary.

"A lot of people feel 'Oh I'm not normal if I'm going through it.'  No, it's very common. You don't have to not feel normal for going through something.  You should be proud and have that feeling of being authentic and different.  Nobody ever said to anyone 'Hey, you're exceptionally normal!' and they're like 'that's a great compliment!'" he said.

A portion of Fable's program included everyone writing down things that are stressing them out.

Most issues had a similar overlying theme that demonstrated that we can all relate to one another.

Fable's work can be found online at MindofFable.com.


More Stories

Don't Miss

  • 101 Days of Summer
    Copyright 2017 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Work for Us!
    Copyright 2017 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Sports Connection
    Copyright 2017 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Latest News

Video Center