Spring means an influx of cyclists on city streets and in state parks, and who could blame them? It’s a truly magical experience to enjoy the great outdoors from the comfort of a saddle. With this in mind, it only makes sense that May is the most appropriate time to celebrate National Bike Month!The League of American Bicyclists created National Bike Month back in 1956 as a way to highlight the many benefits of regular cycling (a form of regular exercise, environmentally friendly, and a great way to see the outdoors to name a few!). Since its foundation, National Bike Month has grown immensely popular, increasing by more than 62 percent between 2000 and 2013.
There are many events to take part in this month to celebrate National Bike Month. Here are just a few to keep in mind.
Bike to Work DayProbably the most well-known facet of National Bike Month is Bike to Work Day, which is a part of Bike to Work Week (currently going on at the time this article was written, May 16–20). Bike to Work Day falls on Friday, May 20 and is exactly what the name describes—it’s a day for people to ride their bikes to work as a show of unity among the cycling community as well as a way to raise awareness to the many benefits of riding a bike.
Different cities across the nation have different ways of celebrating the day. In May 2010, 43 out of 51 of the United States’ largest cities hosted Bike to Work Day events, with Denver clocking in with the highest rate of participation that year. In 2012, Boulder, Colorado had free breakfast available from 11 organizations to its more than 1,200 participants; Bethesda, Maryland unveiled 100 new bike racks; and Chicago offered free tune-ups and balaclavas to riders. San Francisco also makes a huge event of the day every year as they have a humungous cycling community.
Bike to School DayThe first Bike to School Day was in May 2012, and since then it’s become an increasingly popular event. It was inspired by the already popular Walk to School Day, which is typically celebrated nationwide in October. Instead, this event calls for students to hop on their bikes and ride to school on a day in May.
This year’s Bike to School Day already passed on May 4, but 2017’s is already scheduled and will be on May 10!
CycloFemmeAlthough this event has also already passed (hosted on Sunday, May 8), it’s worthy of mention regardless. CycloFemme is a day of cycling in recognition of the powerful women in our lives that opted for the freedom to be different and wear pants and ride bikes and break down barriers like a bunch of admirable badasses. It’s a way to empower women to get outdoors and ride their bikes while also getting rid of the stereotypes within this male-dominated sport.
Local EventsThere are many events that can found locally within your own cycling community, too. And if you’re having trouble finding one, then you can plan your own event. It’s a great way to kickstart a cycling fervor in your area (if there isn’t one already slowly building).
As with all your outdoor adventures, make sure you bring our Pocket Ranger® mobile apps with you to enhance your journey. Happy riding!