As 2018 winds down, we took a little time to think back to this year’s bike riding adventures. To put it plainly, it’s been a helluva year. From racing Barry-Roubaix, Mud, Sweat and Beers, and Arcadia Grit n’ Gravel in the spring to wrapping up the competitive season at Iceman, our little cast of kolo characters have been part of some really fun events and have got to hang out with some awesome human beings.
Sure, our little club had some great results at races across the state, but we were just as thrilled with what we got to be part of when the clock wasn’t running and there were no $3 medals up for grabs. Last winter, we partnered with Yen Yoga & Fitness to do an indoor cycling ride to raise a few hundred bucks for Michigan Youth Opportunities Initiative, which had a huge turnout consisting of Yen’s community and people who had never been to the studio before. In fact, Yen was generous enough to allow us to host spandex-clad fundraisers for groups like Norte, Food Rescue Northern Michigan, the NMC Foundation, and others, all winter long. Our incredibly generous group of sponsors also enabled us to support two scholarships for the Varsity bike team for Norte; one for the spring and one for the fall.
In September, we got ride our bikes for raise over $1,200 for LESS CANCER. We had almost 50 people show up for the ride that started and finished at Breakaway Cafe & Coffee Bar. Letting a bunch of sweaty people in spandex loiter at your restaurant while eating birthday cake isn’t just generous, it’s a little brave if you ask me. But Breanne and Tuna didn’t blink and opened up their cafe with open arms.
What we’re trying to get at here is we owe a lot of people a whole lot of gratitude. Without the generous support of Yen Yoga & Fitness, Velo City Cycles, Alfie Logo Gear, Taproot Cider House, and Breakaway Cafe, we would never have been able to do our thing of helping our community in so many ways. There were also so many excellent individuals who helped out, too. Thank you to each and every one of you who donated time, money, and energy for our fundraising rides over the last year. Your attendance at these rides was appreciated more than you’ll know. We want to have an engaged, active community and that doesn’t happen unless we all come together to get involved. Thank you.
Finally, a shoutout to everyone who rocked their kolo kits in 2018 and helped us do our thing in our community. Tim Bottrell, Dan Ellis, Tom Jewell, Bryan Ellenbaas, Gary Chastain – thank you for repping the black, red, and yellow with so much enthusiasm and for being excellent human beings.
As we start thinking about our plans for 2019, we hope to make a bigger impact on our community, on youth cycling in TC and across the state, and we want to have a darn good time while doing it. If you’re more concerned with what you can give back to our sport and community than what you can get out of it, we sure want to help you help us and get you involved. Until then, be excellent to each other and we’ll see you on indoor trainers!