Category Archives: News

Enjoying the colorful trees along the trail as they get close to peak.

Peak color destinations and times to ride in the upper Midwest this Fall

With the summer season unofficially off the calendar, fall is a great time to extend your bike riding adventures in Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. As the leaves change colors along the miles of paved and mountain bike trails, cyclists will find a kaleidoscope of peak colors at every turn. Especially with the abundant rainfall, we have had this year. Colors along the trails and roadways are predicted to be spectacular. If the weather remains mostly sunny during the day with cooler temps at night, conditions favor stunning vistas while exploring the upper Midwest.

Fall color riding on a bike friendly road.

Fall color riding on a bike-friendly road and trails.

So, in the next few weeks, it will be no surprise to find peak backdrops while riding. Especial using both the Iowa and Minnesota Bike/Hike Guides in conjunction with the following state color reports.

Guides and reports for easy peak color exploration this fall

Each year the fall color peak normally arrives in the northern one-third of the state in mid-September to early October. This year, as in the past few, the peak cycle, regionally, is running a week or so later than normal – so enjoy!

To get a more accurate gauge to the change in colors in areas you plan to explore with your bike see: Iowa’s fall color reportMinnesota’s fall color report; and for the Wisconsinsin fall color report. All three online reports are updated weekly each Thursday during the fall season.

Mountain biking fun with the leaves turning into their spectacular fall colors.

Mountain biking fun with the leaves turning into their spectacular fall colors.

Destinations and trails to enjoy during Minnesota and Wisconsin’s peak riding season

We will start with the Minnesota Bike/Hike Guide, as the color peak a bit earlier. Here, if you haven’t already, you will find over 24-Minnesota bike-friendly destination, plus information and a map of Polk County, WI. to match with the above reports.

Destinations and trails to enjoy during Iowa and Wisconsin’s peak riding season

In the Iowa Bike Guide, you will find over 18-Iowa bike-friendly destination, plus information and a map of La Crosse WI.

Staying safe in peak color riding season

Even on off-road trails, bicyclists need to wear helmets. You are much more likely to fall on your head by locking wheels with another bike. Or other hazards, then riding on a road in traffic.

keep your helmets on!

Also, don’t forget to stop at stop signs on the trail, even if it’s just a driveway or gravel road.

Enjoy many scenic peak color rides this season!

Come out for the Minneapolis Bike Tour and see why travel writers rave

Named a top bike city in recent years by many sources, Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board will host the 13th Annual Minneapolis Bike Tour. With write-ups in Bicycling Magazine, CNN, the Travel Channel, and other media’s. The city’s park and rec department invites you, your family and friends to come and discover what all these travel writers are experiencing.

The Minneapolis Bike Tour

The annual fall bike ride is a family-oriented, recreational-tour which takes place on Sunday, September 15th, starting at 8 a.m.  The ride is great for all ages and abilities and spans the  Grand Rounds Scenic Byway System.

Fun riding the Grand Rounds Scenic Byway System with no traffic. Photo MPLS Park & Rec Facebook

The bike event was created to bring cyclists together and support bike-related initiatives. Proceeds from the Minneapolis Bike Tour will benefit bike safety and education events for Minneapolis youth as well as bike trail improvement projects throughout the city-wide system.

This year’s route

From start to finish, three routes of scenic fun. Photo MPLS Park & Rec Facebook

The 2019 route features a picturesque start and finish line area at Boom Island Park (724 Sibley St. NE). There will be three routes to choose from; a 3.5-mile course, a 19-mile and a 32-mile. All routes are closed to motorized traffic and include stops with refreshments and bike mechanics.

A festival at the end

After your ride, meet new friends while enjoying refreshments and food. Photo MPLS Park & Rec Facebook

Stick around after the ride and enjoy live music, beer (courtesy of local Utepils Brewing) available to participants 21+ (must show ID),  food from local vendors, exhibitor booths and Bike Tour merchandise for sale!

Ride Registration

Pre-registration ends September 9th which includes the option to purchase an artist-designed bike tour t-shirt created by Brandon Gallagher Watson and a beer ticket provided by local Utepils Brewing to those 21 and older. Sign up today and help the City of Minneapolis celebrate their beautiful bike-friendly community. www.minneapolisbiketour.com

Also, please visit our Facebook page and check out our new promo video.

Free Bikes for Kids helps kid's smile with the 2016 season Bike Collection Day, on Saturday, October 8th, at the Mall of America.

Help put a smile on a kids face with your old bike collecting dusts

Do you have a bike or two taking up space and collecting dust? If so, consider donating them to Free Bikes for Kids (FB4K) to help them put smiles on kids faces. No bikes, no problem…if your basement, garage or storage space has already been cleaned out they still need help. FB4K’s also needs volunteers to help clean or do light repair work to get them ready for kids to ride.

Put smiles on kid faces by donating your old bike

Free Bikes for Kids help kids smile with the 2016 season Bike Collection Day, on Saturday, October 8th, Donate your bikes to help more kids.

Free Bikes for Kids helps kids smile by making sure they have a bike.

The kick-off to the 2019 season is Bike Collection Day on Saturday, October 5th, and to make it successful they need your bikes!

FB4K Helps Kids Smile by Volunteering

Don’t have a bike to donate? Join them at their warehouse for 3-hour shifts, from October 7th to November 29th. You can sign up for multiple shifts.

Come on your own or bring your crew. The more, the merrier! Register here to secure your spot.

Free Bikes for Kids helps kids smile so please help by volunteering to clean or wrench on some bikes if you can't help with bike donation.

Free Bikes for Kids helps kids smile please help by volunteering to clean or wrench on some bikes like these guys.

About FB4K

Free Bikes 4 Kidz is a non-profit organization geared toward helping all kids ride into a happier, healthier childhood by providing bikes to those most in need. The public donates gently used bikes. Then, they organize thousands of volunteers to clean and refurbish them before they give them away to kids in need. So really, FB4K helps kids smile.

In 2008 they gave away 300 bikes. Last year it was 5,000 bikes. And this year – who knows. In the last eight years over 30,000 bikes have rolled through their giveaways. What does FB4K have to say about that? They claim they are not done yet. Their future sights are set on other locations throughout the U.S. and the world.

Every year 25 million bikes are sold in the U.S. One-third of those bikes are 20” wheel-size or smaller. Since kids grow like weeds, over 8 million bikes are virtually outgrown each year, giving them an endless supply, while making our environment more sustainable.

Though the generous help of key partners like Allina Health, QBP, Penn Cycle, Park Tool, Nice Ride MN, and the Mall of America, FB4K has gone far. But they still need your support in building the foundation and to help every kid ride into a more memorable childhood.

Do your part making kids smile, see more at http://fb4k.org/

Benefiting BikeMN, two fall bike rides creates a doubleheader of fun

by Russ Lowthian, HaveFunBiking.com

If you haven’t finalized plans for your #NextBikeAdventure consider another Minnesota doubleheader this fall. First, the Saint Paul Bicycle Classic this Sunday, Sept 8th. Then the Mankato River Ramble on Sunday, Oct 6th. Both day-of bike touring events, each benefits the Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota (BikeMN) offering several route options to fit your style of riding at each.

A Minnesota doubleheader of fall rides

First, the Saint Paul Classic Bike Tour

Ready for the first of two great Minnesota fall rides?

In the Twin Cities, thousands of people will enjoy traffic-free cycling on the scenic parkways of Saint Paul. It’s the 25th annual Saint Paul Classic Bike Tour. The biking event is Sunday, September 8th from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Ride participants can choose from bike routes of 15, 30, or 45 miles.

Breathing new life into the Minnesota oldest bike ride, that has connected families and friends for decades, moves to Shakopee, MN, Sunday, July 15.

Fun for everyone, the St Paul Bike Classic

Organizer report the rest stops along each route will provide panoramic views, live music, delicious baked goods, tasty beverages, and fresh organic fruit. The Saint Paul Classic Bike Tour is presented by AARP. Proceeds benefit the Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota, a nonprofit focused on state-wide bicycle advocacy and education. To learn more or to register, click here.

The Mankato River Ramble

The whole family will like the scenery along the Minnesota River Valley.

The whole family will like the scenery along the Minnesota River Valley.

 

Tasty treats, like the pie stop, makes the ride extra delicious.

Tasty treats, like the pie stop, can make the ride extra delicious.

 

About the Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota (BikeMN)

BikeMN is working to make Minnesota a state where bicycling is a safe, easy, fun and cool choice for everyone. The mission of BikeMN is to provide leadership and a unified voice for bicycle education, advocacy and efforts to make Minnesota more bicycle-friendly so that more people will ride bicycles more often. More at www.bikemn.org.

About Greater Mankato Bike and Walk Advocates (GMBWA)

GMBWA encourages individuals and families to walk and bike as part of a healthy lifestyle. Greater Mankato Bike and Walk Advocates work with city, county and state governments, businesses and non-governmental organizations to improve the community’s infrastructure and opportunities for walking and biking. The ride began in 2011, thousands of dollars of profits from the Ramble have gone into signs, outdoor kiosks, and mountain bike trail construction, and other improvements in the Mankato area.

See more of what the Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota is up to

Check out their latest monthly newsletter of workshops, classes, and other fun events the money raised at these bike rides supports. For their BikeMN mission statement check Here.

The MN HS League headed to Southern MN for Race 3# of the season. Battling high temps and dusty wind gusts, September 16, mountain bike racers from across the state arrived in Gamehaven to test their skills in the third race of a seven-race series.

First MN HS Cycling League race in Austin, and more to come

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Freshman Boys D1 | Wyatt Peterson, Burnsville | Mt. Kato 2018 | Photo Credit: tmbimages.com

Freshman Boys  Photo Credit: tmbimages.com

 

With the eighth season of the HS Cycling League race, the series started off at Schindler’s Way Trail, in Todd Park. The first race, of the series, had 798 racers from across Minnesota and Western WI. This is just a portion of the total number of racers from the MN League. With a 30% average growth each year in racers and families in the league, a bye-week schedule was added to manage field sizes. As a result, instead of all 63 teams competing, 45 teams from across the state of MN arrived in Austin to put their skills to the test in the first race of the season. View the Bye-Week Schedule for 2019.

Changes to the League Race schedule a success

The Minnesota League moved from holding all of their races in one day to a two-day race weekend. This additional day of racing allowed middle school racers to compete on Saturday and high school racers to have a full day of racing on Sunday. Racers, coaches, and spectators all shared their overwhelming positive reactions to the schedule change.

Photo Credit: tmbimages.com

 

6th-Graders added to Middle School Racing

The move to a two-day racing schedule also allowed the League to add in 6th graders to middle school racing. In the first race of the season, there were almost 300 middle school boys and girls who competed in their first race.

Race #1 results 

Individual and team results are now posted to the minnesotamtb.org site:

Race 1 – Austin Schindlers Trail Way – Aug 24-25, 2019

Race-1-Austin-MS-Individual-Results-2019

Race-1-Austin-HS-Individual-Results-2019

Race 1 Austin MS Team Results 2019

Race 1-Austin HS Team Results 2019

Austin Skills Challenge

Race #2 weekend  timeline at Rockford, MN

Racing action continues on Sat. Sept. 7 and Sun. Sept. 8 at Lake Rebecca in Rockford, MN. View Race Flyer

Photo Credit: tmbimages.com

The MN League is the sanctioned NICA organization of mountain bike racing for middle school and high school-aged student-athletes, since 2012. View the full schedule of racing for the 2019 season.

About the Minnesota High School Cycling League

The Minnesota High School Cycling League is a state-wide independent activity provider for student-athletes in 6th to 12th grade. Their mission is to build strong minds, bodies, character, and communities through cycling, regardless of ability level. Each MN League season includes summer programs, a seven-race series, wilderness first aid certification courses and a Spring Leaders’ Summit for training and certification of coaches. The MN League exists by virtue of a range of fundraising activities, as well as generous donors, and MN League sponsors. For more information on the MN League, visit minnesotamtb.org.

In celebration of its annual art festival next weekend, Lakeville, MN will host it third Tour of Lakeville on Sept 15.

Take a Tour of Lakeville on your bike before their fall Art Festival

With the Lakeville Art Festival soon here, September 21-22, learn more about the trails and bike-friendly street routes around town on the Tour of Lakeville. This year the Pedal in the Parks ride series starts and ends at Pioneer Plaza Park on Saturday, September 21st. The park plaza is located in downtown Lakeville where the Art Festival takes place, Saturday and Sunday on the same weekend. The scenic route of this years bike tour will help those who participate learn how to safely get around Lakeville. Then, after the ride check out the art festival. Or, try Lakeville’s new mountain bike park for some adrenaline biking fun.

The Tour of Lakeville is part of the 2019 ‘Pedal in the Park’ ride series

In celebration of its annual art festival next weekend, Lakeville, MN will lead its second Pedal in the Parks bicycle ride this Saturday.

In celebration of its annual art festival, the third Tour of Lakeville ride will happen Saturday, September 15th.

A family fun event, ride along with Lakeville Friends of the Environment on a 17-mile tour of the city. Leaving at 9 a.m. out of Pioneer Plaza the tour will explore many of the city’s bike-friendly routes. Along the Tour ride participants will discover many attractive segments of the community’s outdoor spaces that include:

  • Great view of Lake Marion as the tour passes the West Lake Marion Mountain Bike Trailhead that opened last year.
  • The newly paved Juno Trail that hugs the lake shoreline.
  • The popular Antler’s Park with a swimming beach, picnic areas, volleyball, and horseshoes.
  • On Ipava Trail, just north of Ira Lane, reach the highest point of the ride, 1,108 feet, for a fist bump.
  • Listen for birds and look for butterflies on the paved trail through Michaud Park-Conservation Area.
  • And More!

Don’t worry no one will be dropped on this family-friendly ride. However, all ride participants are expected to ride at a moderate pace so everyone can share their favorite ride stories after returning.

Coinciding with the Lakeville Art Festival, the tour begins at Pioneer Park Plaza, in the downtown area, at 20801 Holyoke Ave. Lakeville, MN, 55044. Bike tour participants will return back to the downtown area so they can take in the art festival. You can register online for this bike ride with the city parks department by clicking here or call 952-985-4600 for more information.

The ride is scheduled to last approximately two and a half hours. This time frame is dependent on the number of registered bikers and the route. Please bring a helmet and a water bottle.

After the ride make it a day at the city’s art festival

Take in the Lakeville Art Festival with over 90 artists exhibiting

Take in the Lakeville Art Festival with over 90 artists exhibiting

Considered by many to be one of the finest art festivals, the Lakeville Art Festival is held the third weekend in September. This year the event will feature over 90 artists in an intimate and accessible setting. The artist booths are staged in a park-like atmosphere. This allows for a unique circular type arrangement to help showcase their work. Plus many of the artists have scheduled demonstrations over the two days of the festival.

Another family-friendly highlight at the art festival is a stop into the “Young at Art” tent. This workshop area is stocked with plenty of art supplies, ideas and experts to get the creative juices flowing.

If you prefer to check out the new mountain bike trail in Lakeville

Working closely with the city, the Lakeville Cycling Association has constructed a mountain bike trail system on the west side of Lake Marion. Another family-friendly attraction, the new course is approximately five miles in length. The trail segments in the park allow plenty of fun features for beginning, intermediate and advanced mountain bikers. This is a single track, one way, a trail system that includes multiple switchbacks, berms, and rollers. Final work for this trail was recently completed for all to enjoy.

The new Lakeville mountain bike course is fun for the whole family.

The new Lakeville mountain bike course is fun for the whole family.

To check out his new, year-round, mountain bike trail system see map. You can access the trailhead in Casperson Park, by parking in the gravel lot north of the soccer fields, at 19720 Juno Trail. Watch for trail updates and trail conditions on the clubs Facebook page.

For those visiting the area who want to learn more about connecting from the area hotels to the trails and fun things to do when not riding, see the At-A-Glance Lakeville and their map.

MN HS Cycling League begins its 2019 race season in Austin, MN

The MN High School Cycling League returns to Austin, MN this Saturday and Sunday (August 24-25) for an action-packed weekend of mountain bike racing. This will kick off the 2019 racing season for almost 2,000 middle school and high school students throughout Minnesota and Western Wisconsin.

Freshman Boys D1 | Wyatt Peterson, Burnsville | Mt. Kato 2018 | Photo Credit: tmbimages.com

Freshman Boys D1 | Wyatt Peterson, Burnsville | Mt. Kato 2018 | Photo Credit: tmbimages.com

Cycling League season highlights

Get ready Minnesota – a new race venue will be added for the Sept. 14-15 race. Each year, the MN League moves their race weekends to different venues across the state. This brings the sport to different locations around the region and to offer new and exciting race opportunities for the students. This year, the League is thrilled to be a part of the Chequamegon Festival the weekend of Sept. 14 and Sept. 15. Working with a variety of partners, including the Chequamegon Festival, a new trail has been built near Stone Lake, WI (Summit Lake Game Farm) that will become an exciting race venue for years to come – and a new mountain bike trail for people to ride and enjoy year-round. A special thanks to Tom Gujer and Chad McDonald for their help to make this trail happen!

Growing Interest and demand for younger mountain bike racers

They are all ready for challenge in Mankato at Mt. Kato.

They are all ready for a challenge. Photo Credit: tmbimages.com

As the interest in mountain bike racing has grown across the region there is also an increasing number of younger students interested in riding and racing with the MN League. To accommodate this demand, each MN League team has been given the option of adding in 6th-graders to their middle-school teams. They are thrilled to announce that there are over 160 sixth graders already signed up!

Schedule moves to two-day race weekends to accommodate growth

Due to a 30% growth in teams and racers, the MN League has adjusted their races from one day to a two-day racing schedule weekend for each scheduled race. Middle school racers will compete on Saturdays and high school racers will compete on Sundays.

“Last year, due to required race day schedule changes, we had to remove Sunday pre-ride time – this year, we were determined to find a way to bring back the ability for student-athletes to pre-ride and race on the same day,” said Josh Kleve, MN League Director, and Co-Founder. “By shifting the middle school to Saturday, this enabled us to add 6th grade, a long-requested addition, and spread the races out providing a more enjoyable experience for all of our middle school and high school student-athletes.”

Race Weekend Timeline at Austin, MN – Race #1

Photo Credit: tmbimages.com

For race #1 a full weekend is lined up at Schindler’s Way Trail near Todd Park, in Austin, MN. This Saturday, August 24th the middle school racers (6th, 7th, and 8th grade) will kick off the weekend schedule at 1 pm, with the last race of the day starting at 3:40 pm. Racing will resume on Sunday. August. 25th, with high-school racers starting at 9:30 am and wrapping up with the last race of the day starting at 3 pm.

With over 70 teams registered, the MN League has implemented a bye-week schedule to balance the riders across the venues. See the teams competing in Austin, MN.

For a full weekend #1 schedule of race start times, review the Austin Race Flyer.

The MN League is the sanctioned NICA organization of mountain bike racing for middle school and high school-aged student-athletes, since 2012. View the full schedule of racing for the 2019 season.

About the Minnesota High School Cycling League

The Minnesota High School Cycling League is a state-wide independent activity provider for student-athletes in 6th to 12th grade. Their mission is to build strong minds, bodies, character, and communities through cycling, regardless of ability level. Each MN League season includes summer programs, a seven-race series, wilderness first aid certification courses and a Spring Leaders’ Summit for training and certification of coaches. The MN League exists by virtue of a range of fundraising activities, as well as generous donors, and MN League sponsors. For more information on the MN League, visit minnesotamtb.org.

With record attendance the first few days of the 2018 Minnesota State Fair, using a bicycle to get there can reduce the hassle factor out of visiting the fair. Plus, it is also a great way to burn-off those extra calories from all of the fun things to eat on a stick.

Remove the hassle factor going to the Minnesota State Fair and see more!

With record attendance, the norm at the Minnesota State Fair, using your bicycle is a comfortable mode for getting there. If you are planning on attending this year’s ‘Great Minnesota Get-together’ bicycle parking is still free. Ride your bike from home, park your car a few miles away with your bike along or incorporate the Metro Transit Bus for a multi-modal commute. Commuting by bicycle can take the hassle factor out of the annual get-together. Besides, it is a great way to burn-off some those calories from all of the fun things you can eat on a stick.

RIDING YOUR BIKE TO THE MINNESOTA STATE FAIR CYCLIST CAN CHOOSE BETWEEN THREE SECURE BIKE CORRALS TO PARK THEIR BIKE WHILE VISITING THE GREAT MINNESOTA GET TOGETHER.

RIDING YOUR BIKE TO THE MINNESOTA STATE FAIR CYCLIST CAN CHOOSE BETWEEN THREE SECURE BIKE CORRALS TO PARK THEIR BIKE WHILE VISITING THE GREAT MINNESOTA GET TOGETHER.

This year the fair started on August 22nd and runs through Labor Day, September 2nd. So there is plenty of time to go, plan your mode of transportation to get there and what you will see.

A hassle-free way to get to the Minnesota State Fair

Riding your bike to the Fair cyclist can choose between three secure bike corrals to park their bicycle while visiting. As in the past, riding your bike to the fair can be fun and reduce the hassle of traffic congestion getting there. This year ride your bike, take a shuttle bus or both by multi-modal commuting. Each day, those who commute by bicycle to the fairgrounds, from 6 a.m. to midnight, will find three (3) secure bike locations. They are located at:

North Bike Lot: Hoyt-Snelling Gate (#2)

West Bike Lot: Randall Ave-Buford Gate (#16)

South Bike Lot: Como-Snelling Gate (#6) is a popular location. This bike corral fills fast so if it is not too inconvenient, plan your route to one of the two above locations.

AT THE MINNESOTA STATE FAIR , CHECK THE LATEST IN ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY EXHIBITS IN THE ECO PROGRESS CENTER.

AT THE MINNESOTA STATE FAIR, CHECK THE LATEST IN ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY EXHIBITS IN THE ECO PROGRESS CENTER.

Here is a map, from St Paul Smart Trips, showing the best bicycle routes to ride your bike comfortably to the fair.

Bike related things to do and see at the Minnesota State Fair

The Shoe Clip Light is an ideal item bike commuter safety

The Shoe Clip Light is an ideal item bike commuter safety

Now that you are at the fair walking around you can think about what you might want to purchase. Maybe a shoe clip light at the both under the Grandstand so you are more visible when out riding at night? You will find out more on where to purchase this item and other fun things on the free Minnesota State Fair App, (Apple App Store or Google Play store).

At the Minnesota State Fair, check the latest in environmentally friendly exhibits, like the e-bikes, in the Eco Progress Center.

IN THE ECO PROGRESS CENTER SEE THE LATEST ON ELECTRIC ASSIST BIKES.

IN THE ECO PROGRESS CENTER SEE THE LATEST ON ELECTRIC ASSIST BIKES (e-bikes).

Need a new Minnesota Bike Map? In the Education Building, look for the Minnesota Department of Transportation booth where you will find the latest maps free of charge.

Like parades?

AT THE MINNESOTA STATE FAIR PARADE, ITS FUN TO SEE THE UNI-CYCLISTS RIDING AMONG THE FLOATS AND MARCHING BANDS.

AT THE MINNESOTA STATE FAIR PARADE, ITS FUN TO SEE THE UNI-CYCLISTS RIDING AMONG THE FLOATS AND MARCHING BANDS.

At the Minnesota State Fair parade, its fun to see the uni-cyclists riding among the floats and marching bands. Each day at 2 p.m. on Cosgrove Street you can watch the Minnesota State Fair Parade. If you are lucky you might see the Twin Cities Unicyclists Club performing.  These single wheeled bicyclists always do some fun tricks as they pedal along the parade route. As the parade ends near the Eco Progress Center you can check out the latest exhibits in environmentally friendly living.

Fun foods at the Minnesota State Fair to try

YOU WILL FIND PLENTY OF FUN FOODS TO TRY AT THIS YEARS MINNESOTA STATE FAIR.

YOU WILL FIND PLENTY OF FUN FOODS TO TRY AT THIS YEARS MINNESOTA STATE FAIR.

You will find plenty of fun foods to try at this years Minnesota State Fair. Every year there are many fun and wacky foods entrees to try at the fair. This year is no exception looking at the latest published list of new foods to try. Items that have caught my attention to try include:
Bada Bing Sandwich, A Carnitas Taco Cone, and the No Bologna Coney, to name a few.

Hope this helps you plan for your next visit to the Minnesota State Fair. If we missed something you may have discovered? Please let us know, please leave a comment below.

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Ride the driftless monster at the La Crosse Bike Festival

For nine years, the La Crosse Area Labor Day Bike Festival has hosted all kinds of fun rides, for all kinds of riders. This year, along with the: family-friendly neighborhood tours, ice-cream rides, mountain biking, live music, and scenic road rides, there is the “Monster”. A 100-mile ride (with a 62 and 125-mile option) that will take you on an unforgettable journey through the scenic valley of the Mississippi River.

Travel on low-traffic rural roads, or at least on roads with bike facilities.

The Monster Ride is 100 miles, with 10 climbs, and 7,400 feet of elevation gain. Six of the climbs on this route count as real “Driftless Monsters,” or hills with over 300 ft of elevation gain and at least one has a grade of 14% or greater. Through the weekend, starting at the registration tent in Riverside Park, you can complete this route anytime between sunrise and sunset (6:28 a.m. to 7:35 p.m.) each day of the festival. Plus, it’s free, but you will need to register!

* NOTE CHANGE: Mass start is at 8 a.m. if you want to leave with the pack.

This is a self-supported, self-guided event; not a race. Challenge yourself or feel free to grab some friends and see if you have what it takes. The routes are not marked on the road. Rather they will be on Ride With GPS as an “event” with all available features. PDFs of the route and a cue sheet are also available.

Family fun for everyone at the LaCrosse Area Bicycle Festival.

Sign-up for the La Crosse Area Labor Day Bike Festival

The Festival registration, most in-town rides, the Open Streets fair, and live music are all complimentary. However, premium festival registration will give you many additional benefits including text-based weather updates; t-shirts and a special bag of goodies. The Gravel Enduro Series and Gran Fondo are also optional fee-based events with timing and added benefits.

In-town Bike Festival rides

Family fun for everyone on the La Crosse Area Bicycle Festival ice cream tour.

Family fun for everyone on the La Crosse Area Bicycle Festival ice cream tour.

Most in town guided rides are free, except money for cool treats, and are suitable for families, kids, and are easy. They leave from Riverside Park at the designated time, make frequent stops,

Pump track fun at the LaCrosse Area Bicycle Festival is easy and will help you improve your mountain bike skills.

Pump track fun at the LaCrosse Area Bicycle Festival is easy and will help you improve your mountain bike skills.

and have a leader and volunteers to shepherd the ride through the city.

Bike Festival self-guided bike routes

The Bike Festival team have designed these countryside routes to be ridden self-supported. Ride your bike alone or in small groups, without the need for a tour guide or ride leader. All mapped routes are designed loops, leaving from public parks or parking lots. Wherever possible, you’ll travel on low-traffic rural roads, or at least on roads with bike facilities. To help you stay self-sufficient, maps show optional stops every 25-30 miles at convenience stores or public parks.

Time to make plans now!

Register today for the La Crosse Area Labor Day Bike Festival.

For lodging options see: Destination La Crosse

Mayor’s entrepreneurial tourism bike ride in Cedar Falls, IA

This weekend, enjoy a bike ride with Cedar Falls Mayor Jim Brown. Along the route learn about this thriving entrepreneurial community along the way. The bike ride will tour three businesses…Runners Flat, Talk to Me Technologies, Hansen’s Dairy, and Gasoline. Along the way hear each of their stories about starting the business and why each of them selected the Cedar Falls location.

This free 8-10 mile-long ride is scheduled for Saturday, August, 24, at 9:00 am. The ride starts at the Northwest corner of City Hall (2nd& Clay) in Cedar Fall, in the parking lot across from Overman Park. The ride will end at Hansen’s with the Kubo food truck and vendors.

The ride is brought to you by the City of Cedar Falls, Red Cedar, and the Bike-Ped Advisory Board of Cedar Falls.

See more here