Bike Week in Rochester 2020

 Bike week 2020  

 The cycling season in Rochester continues with Bike Week 2020

Spanning two consecutive weekends, from September 18 to 27 (moved from May to September this year because of the pandemic), Bike Week 2020 offers cycling events for all ages and all levels of expertise. Bike Week is a celebration of biking in Rochester and expands the use of bikes as practical, daily transportation.

With bike shops sold out and many more people getting out on two wheels, Bike Week welcomes new riders and demonstrates the great community and infrastructure available to cyclists in Rochester. New this year is a recommended daily thematic ride for you and your family.

Bike Week is put together by Reconnect Rochester and its cycling arm, the Rochester Cycling Alliance, but is truly a grassroots effort in that each event is organized individually. Information for the rides is below, along with a specific contact for each ride. 

Here is what’s in store:

This year, masks are mandatory at each event.

Friday, September 18

  • 7 pm: Light Up the Night Ride (131 Elmwood Ave): This fun ride to kick off Bike Week begins after sundown, and cyclists are encouraged to light up their bikes with glow sticks and bike lights. Prizes will be awarded for best lit-up bike and most festive rider. The ride then proceeds through the city at a slow but enjoyable pace. Total distance 8 miles. Dress warm and bring an extra layer for when the temperature creeps down after dark. Contact: Jesse Peers, jesse@reconnectrochester.org
  • Ride of the day: Bike to A Body of Water. Kick off #rocbikeweek with our first Ride of the Day! Bike to a body of water. Use your imagination! Lake Ontario. Genesee River. Erie Canal. Mendon Pond. A fountain in a local park.

Saturday, September 19

  • 10 am: Freedom Ride (400 block of Jefferson Ave):  The ROC Freedom Riders organize big, intentional, action-oriented rides highlighting Black spaces, Black places, and acknowledging Black faces, in the spirit of the original Freedom Riders of the 1940s and 1960s. Contact: RocFreedomRiders@gmail.com
  • Ride of the day: Bike to a Library. In conjunction with Flower City Family Cycling’s Little Free Library family rides, we suggest you ride to your local library for a nice book to enjoy this weekend. 

Sunday, September 20

  • Ride of the day: Bike to Dessert. Enjoy an after-meal sweet treat, and bonus for getting there in fresh air and under your own power.

Monday, September 21

  • 6:30-9:30 am: Bike to Work Day pit stop (East Avenue & Broad Street): If you’ve never tried biking to work, this is the week! Rochesterians are very fortunate to have an average 4.1-mile commute to work, which is about 25 minutes by bike at a casual pace. To thank people cycling to work on September 21st, the Rochester Cycling Alliance will have cereal bars to share in a safe manner. Swing by, fuel up, and talk cycling with our dedicated volunteers. Contact: Jesse Peers, jesse@reconnectrochester.org
  • Ride of the day: Bike to Work or School. Start the work week with a practical ride, to someplace you were already going anyway. Ride to work or school. If you are working or learning from home, ride around the block back to your “office” or “classroom” and create a new fun commute. 

Tuesday, September 22

  • 7 pm: Unity Ride East (Tops Plaza, Upper Falls Blvd): Every Tuesday Black Girls Do Bike Rochester invites riders of all ages and abilities to ride for unity and peace in the city’s northeast side. Contact: Kecia McCullough, bgdbrochny@gmail.com
  • Ride of the day: Bike to a Susan B Anthony or Frederick Douglass statue: Celebrate Rochester’s most famous citizens and honor them with a bike ride. Visit any SBA or FD statue and ponder the great things they did for our community. Since it’s Tuesday, which is traditionally election day, may we remind you to make sure you are registered to vote.

Wednesday, September 23

  • 7 pm: RBK Wednesday Night Cruise (Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park). The Rochester Bike Kids are a dynamic, informal group of mostly young people who bike together regularly. All ikers are welcome. Their signature ride is the Wednesday Night Cruise (WNC). Contact: Amy Slakes, amyslakes@gmail.com
  • Ride of the day: Run an Errand by Bike. Do something by bike you needed to do anyway – a grocery stop, the bank, pharmacy, etc. Feel the freedom of finding easy parking right at the front door.

Thursday, September 24

  • 7 pm: Unity Ride (Bulls Head Plaza, 855 W. Main Street). The Unity Ride is now in its sixth season of biking every Thursday evening during the riding season. It began as a way for 19th Ward residents to grieve the tragic shooting at the Boys & Girls Club and stand for peace. It has become an important social cohesive. All ages and abilities are welcome. Contact: Scott Wagner, scott.wagner.ny@gmail.com
  • Ride of the day: Bike to a Bridge. As a way to “bridge” the work week and the weekend (see what we did there?) we suggest Pont de Rennes, one of Rochester's most scenic with a spectacular view of the falls. If that's out of your distance ability, choose another bridge - over a path, stream or highway. 

Friday, September 25

  • 7:30-9:30 am Bike to Work Day pit stop (Elmwood cycletrack across from main hospital entrance). Our region’s largest employer is a wonderful bike destination! Situated along the Genesee River and near the Erie Canal, you’re sure to encounter some scenic spots enroute. The University earned a silver “Bicycle Friendly University” award in 2018 and had Rochester’s most used bike share station during Pace’s tenure. To thank people cycling to the river and medical campuses on September 25th, the Rochester Cycling Alliance will have cereal bars to share in a safe manner. Swing by, fuel up, and talk cycling with our dedicated volunteers. Contact: Tracey Austin, taustin7@parking.rochester.edu
  • Ride of the day: Ride to a Park. Pay homage to the Flower City with your choice of destination, as long as it’s got flowers. A park or garden or even a cemetery. Stop and smell the roses!

Saturday, September 26

  • 10am Roc the Riverway Guided Bike Ride (Andrew St. bridge downtown). PowerPoint presentations not your thing? Experience all the progress on ROC the Riverway projects up close and on two wheels! Meet on the Andrew Street bridge between St. Paul & State Street and travel along the Genesee Riverway Trail. Learn about the recent and future enhancements to the riverfront. To register for this ride, please visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/roc-the-riverway-bike-tour-part-of-rochester-bike-week-tickets-121399165171. 
  • Ride of the day: Bike to Someplace New. Find a new trail or neighborhood you’d like to visit. One suggestion: the Highland Crossing Trail, inaugurated late last year.

Sunday, September 27

  • 11 am: Sam Patch Fall Classic (Roundhouse shelter at Genesee Valley Park): Join the Keeping It Classy Cycling Club for the 2nd annual Sam Patch Fall Classic! Bring your own picnic. Dress up cute and throw a teddy bear in your basket to honor Sam Patch’s ill-fated compatriot. Just bring the sass and the class. The route will be a leisurely slow ride and suited to families, casual cyclists, and anyone looking for a safe friendly ride. Please bring food for yourself Contact: Amy Slakes, amyslakes@gmail.com
  • Ride of the day: Choose your own bike adventure. It’s about the journey, not the destination. As a close to Bike Week, find a friend to ride with and just enjoy the glory of getting around on two wheels. 

All week, anytime

Flower City Family Cycling Little Free Library Rides (multiple routes). In the time of COVID, take a solo family ride connecting Little Free Libraries in different neighborhoods in Rochester, Brighton, or Pittsford. Explore a neighborhood, find some new-to-you books, and share some other books. Contact: Brooke Fossey: brooke.taylor@gmail.com

Biking in Rochester: General Information   

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