An update on PPSP Bike Fun planning

As winter has progressed, Poky Pedaling Stevens Point has kept a focus on warmer weather to come. The rising temps will be accompanied by another season of Bike Fun for Poky Pedalers throughout the Stevens Point area. Although the 2016 Bike Fun Calendar won’t be released until the end of April, I want to reveal the curtain a tad on what this year’s Poky Pedals have in store.

Shop & Donate by Bike
I’m very excited that our Bike Fun will get started with PPSP’s first-ever donation ride. Months before revealing the Bike Fun Calendar, I rarely give any detail about individual Poky Pedals. But I’m actually so excited about this Poky Pedal that I am breaking this rule and will discuss here what this donation ride is about.

choc ride copps outside

Visit shops, buy stuff, carry it away, and donate it all to a worthy non-profit – all by bike. That’s the essence of Shop & Donate by Bike

Shop & Donate by Bike will provide a pleasant ride through Stevens Point while stopping at a few stores. At each store, Poky Pedalers in groups of 3 or 4 will each contribute $5 to their group’s funds. The group will use their pooled funds to purchase items from a shopping list specific to their group. Once all the groups have finished shopping at one store, we’ll load all the purchased goodies onto a bike trailer, ride together to the next store, and repeat with new shopping lists.

After the last store, we will ride together carrying all the items we bought to a local non-profit social service agency, where we will unload the day’s purchases and donate the huge pile of goodies to them. Through our Bike Fun, I anticipate we’ll end up donating about $350 worth of goods that will be extremely useful to the people in need served by the organization to which we donate. And I’d be thrilled if a record turnout for Shop & Donate by Bike allows us to donate twice that amount.

That’s all the detail I will reveal for now about Shop & Donate by Bike. For more, including which social service agency we’ll be donating to, Poky Pedalers will have to wait until the 2016 Bike Fun Calendar is released. I will mention that Shop & Donate by Bike is scheduled for May 21. Poky Pedalers can circle that date so you don’t miss out on this particularly generous flavor of Bike Fun.

And for those wondering how we’re going to carry all this stuff by bicycle…well, that’s a detail I’ll withhold until later. I’ll just say that I’m pretty certain most Poky Pedalers will be quite impressed with the bike trailer we’ll be loading our purchases onto. You really won’t want to miss Shop & Donate by Bike.


Where will this year’s Bike Fun take us? The 2016 Bike Fun Calendar will be released in late April

Other Poky Pedals
The remainder of the 2016 Bike Fun Calendar will have the usual mix of scenery, history, and whimsy. We’ll repeat some old themes and introduce some new ones. As usual, Poky Pedals will generally be 10 miles or so in length. And, of course, we’ll be poky, riding slowly in one big group to maximize Bike Fun.

I do want to alert those who have shared Bike Fun with PPSP in past years that we’ll have fewer Poky Pedals in 2016. I continue to travel cross-country often for family reasons, requiring me to significantly limit my commitments in Stevens Point.

I am still evaluating what that means for the 2016 Bike Fun Calendar. There is a strong possibility that our Bike Fun may be limited to one Saturday ride each month and that we may not have any picnic, pizza, or dessert rides this year. As much as I would miss Bike Fun on these popular Poky Pedals from past years, this sort of schedule would simplify my PPSP efforts, which in turn makes it easier for me to strike a balance among all my obligations.

Nevertheless, there will still be a heap of Bike Fun to share in 2016. We’ll have a new bellringer ride – it’s never too early to buy a bell for your bike – and we’ll end the year as always with the Maple Ride.

big bird selfie

A scene from the 2014 Bicycle Adventure Extravaganza: it sure looks like everyone is having a ton of Bike Fun. PPSP will be collaborating on this year’s BAE

Another new event will be a collaboration between PPSP and the 3rd Annual Bicycle Adventure Extravaganza organized by Point Area Bicycle Service. The Bicycle Adventure Extravaganza is an elaborate all-ages free urban bicycle scavenger hunt with checkpoints, challenges, numerous prizes, and a post-Extravaganza party. For a better idea of what the Extravaganza is all about, look at my PPSP blog post from the 2014 Extravaganza, which includes dozens of pictures.

Last year’s Extravaganza drew over 400 (!!) participants, many in costume, who swarmed the city by bicycle on a Sunday afternoon. That was almost four times the size of the first one. How many will show up this year? 600? 800? 1000??!!??

I’m thrilled that PPSP will be contributing to the Bike Fun infusing the Extravaganza. I won’t reveal yet the specifics of my collaboration. That detail is just one more thing to whet your appetite for the 2016 Bike Fun Calendar.

Not much longer ‘til Bike Fun
Although snow is piled everywhere, Bike Fun will be upon us before you know it. This glimpse into the coming season’s Poky Pedals should only intensify this realization. The 2016 Bike Fun Calendar will be released on the PPSP website towards the end of April. That thought alone should make those snow piles appear to be melting just a tad.

As spring approaches, I look forward to sharing Bike Fun with all Poky Pedalers in 2016.

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