If you didn’t notice, Kosciusko County does a great job of providing plenty of opportunities for bicyclists of all skill levels to get outside and enjoy some fun events and many are for a great cause as well. Here’s a quick rundown of a few upcoming events taking place in August. Put these on your calendar and make sure to hit one of these events while summer is still here…
August 7: First Friday Warsaw – we always encourage people to ride their bikes downtown to enjoy the festivities of First Friday in Warsaw. With increased bike racks available downtown, and oftentimes other riders leaving from Trailhouse around 6pm, it’s a great way to enjoy the kick-off to the weekend and a new month, while helping the environment, alleviating traffic issues, and doing something good for your body.
August 16 – MMBRS NIMBA MTB Series / KCV MTB XC Race – Winona Lake Trails: The Northern Indiana Mountain Bike Association does an amazing job building and maintaining mountain bike trails in the Michiana area, and their support of cycling is top notch. Come out to their fundraising race series which help support each of the local, northern Indiana mountain bike trails. The August 16 race benefits our local Winona Lake trails.
August 22: Run+Ride for Ride+Walk – Join us at the Winona Lake trails for a fun day of trail running and mountain bike racing all for a great cause. Choose from the 5/10k trail run in the morning and/or the 6/12 hour mountain bike endurance race in the afternoon. Gather up your team, or ride solo, while enjoying some great food, music, a day with friends (old and new), cold beer and a ton of fun for the right reason. Proceeds will benefit local trails, including the Ride+Walk Warsaw+Winona Lake initiative. Be sure to bring a costume and invite your friends. We’ll have random prizes drawn throughout the day for things like best costume, youngest participant, oldest participant, etc. Pre-register and save. Event t-shirts and meal tickets guaranteed for pre-registrants only.
The Warsaw Parks and Recreation Department and Warsaw Breakfast Optimist Club will be hosting the first ever KIDS TRIATHLON CLINICS for youth ages 5-10 years old on Monday July 27th, Tuesday July 28th, Wednesday July 29th, and Thursday, July 30th from 6-7:15pm at Pike Lake Beach.
Parents and volunteers are needed for the last clinic date (Thursday July 30th).
For more details including a Kids Triathlon Clinic information document and registration form, log onto warsaw.in.gov, click on PARKS & RECREATION, or e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org. or call the Parks and Recreation Department Monday – Friday, 7am – 4pm at 574-372-9554 if you have any questions.
Kosciusko County Velo (KCV Cycling) has donated $5,000 to a newly established Ride+Walk Fund. The money will go to help reach the matching funds needed for the recent K21 Health Foundation’s 3-1 matching grant of $375,000 for the community’s Ride+Walk project on E. Market Street, which includes the addition of a world-class pedestrian and bicycle-friendly trail design, helping to eventually connect trails in Warsaw and Winona Lake.
“Although we’re a small non-profit, fully run by volunteers, we have a large mission focused on helping the community through our shared passion for bicycling,” said Greg Demopoulos, KCV President. “It is an honor to be able to donate to a community initiative we are so proud of. It’s ultimately what we want to do as an organization – raise awareness for the benefits of bicycling, offer activities and education to help improve community health, and encourage others in the community to join us in raising funds to build trails and provide access to the infrastructure needed to make our community a better place to live, work, and play.”
The Ride+Walk Fund held in partnership with K21 Health Foundation will allow for organizations and individuals to easily make donations for future infrastructure and education improvements outlined by the Ride+Walk Master Plan. In 2012, the Ride +Walk Master Plan was developed through several public input meetings in coordination with the Indiana Department of Health, the city of Warsaw, and the town of Winona Lake.
“Our hope is that our entire community embraces whatever healthy living opportunities are available to them, and interests them. Supporting the progress through advocacy, financial donations, volunteerism, and lifestyle commitments are important for everyone to provide a vibrant community,” said Rich Haddad, K21 Health Foundation President and CEO.
“The persistent grassroots efforts of Kosciusko County Velo have been the catalyst for the Indiana Department of Health planning grant that funded our current Ride+Walk Master Plan. They have also been foundational to the significant progress we have made over the past three years to develop and grow our Ride+Walk infrastructure,” said Warsaw Mayor Joe Thallemer. “Private donations from individuals and organizations are most critical to assist as match funds to leverage public allocations and grant opportunities. The growth of our community trail system has gained tremendous momentum. It is now up to all of us to sustain that growth!”
“Ride+Walk Warsaw + Winona Lake is about making it as safe, easy, and fun as possible to get from here to there. KCV does a wonderful job of ‘getting the wheels rolling,’ and when those riders want to integrate bikes further into their daily routine, we have a great team of partners working together to make that possible. The challenges that come with this integration are as diverse as the members of our community, and it takes a village (and a city) to make it happen,” said Tim Dombrosky, Warsaw Assistant City Planner and Ride+Walk Warsaw+Winona Lake Coordinator.
PHOTO: Kosciusko County Velo (KCV) Board Members and volunteers donated $5000 to the newly established Ride+Walk Fund to Warsaw Assistant City Planner and Ride+Walk Warsaw+Winona Lake Coordinator Tim Dombrosky, K21 Health Foundation President Rich Haddad, and Warsaw Mayor Joe Thallemer. (Pictured from left to right): Megan Metzger, Bruce Lankenau, Fred Helfrich, Tim Dombrosky, Matt Metzger, Greg Demopoulos, Barry McManus, Todd Snyder, Hunter Metzger, Jacob Moore, Rich Haddad, Andy Cochran, Joe Thallemer, Rob Bishop, Russell Webb, Kami Johnson, and Chris Gaby.
We are excited to announce this year’s group ride offerings for 2015. Our plan is to offer the following rides on a weekly basis starting in early May and continuing through September…
- Beginner No-drop Mountain Bike
- Beginner No-drop Road
- Intermediate Road
- First Friday Family Fun Rides
Our objective, stated bluntly, is to get butts on bikes. We want to offer, especially to new riders, a fun and safe way to get out with other riders and learn about the fun of group rides, as well as safe riding rules and techniques.
In order to make these rides effective we obviously need experienced bicyclists to take leadership roles. In the past the various group rides we offered were led by only a few very dedicated members, and we know that took a toll on them.
This year we want to spread the work and the fun, so we are looking for volunteers that are willing to lead just one group ride per month, so if we are offering 4 rides per week, and we would prefer 2 leaders per ride, you can see we need about 30 people to step up to volunteer. That sounds like a lot, but there are many of you that have benefited from such rides early in your cycling career, so we hope you will step up to give back.
We will provide training and clear direction to all ride leaders. And we expect to be able to offer some swag as an enticement, though we know you will do it because you are just a nice person.
If you would like to find out more, or want to sign up to lead a ride a couple times per month, please contact Fred Helfrich.
There’s something special about bicycling at the end of summer and early fall… the cooler weather, the leafs changing color, the smell of bonfires, Octoberfest(s), etc… And thus, we’re excited to highlight some great events taking place this upcoming season:
September 5: First Friday Warsaw – we always encourage people to ride their bikes downtown to enjoy the festivities of First Friday in Warsaw. With increased bike racks available downtown, and oftentimes other riders leaving from Trailhouse around 6pm, it’s a great way to enjoy the kick-off to the weekend and a new month, while helping the environment, alleviating traffic issues, and doing something good for your body.
September 13: 12 Hours of Winona – Join us at the Winona Lake trails for a fun day of mountain bike racing all for a great cause. Gather up your team, or ride solo, while enjoying some great food, music, a day with friends (old and new), cold beer and a ton of fun for the right reason. Proceeds will benefit local trails, including the Ride+Walk Warsaw+Winona Lake Market Street project. Be sure to bring a costume and invite your friends. We’ll have random prizes drawn throughout the day for things like best costume, youngest participant, oldest participant, etc. Pre-register and save. Event t-shirts and meal tickets guaranteed for pre-registrants only. See the event flyer here.
October 4: Cerulean Hash Ride & Run – One of the funnest events of the year. Our friends at Cerulean throw a big Octoberfest party for us, umm… well, to close their Garden Bar for the season, but it’s kicked off with a big, group ride (MTB and road) and run, capped off with great food, great brews and live music. And proceeds benefit our local trails, including the Ride+Walk Warsaw+Winona Lake Market Street project. The only rules; head for the trails (or the road) at the start, do as many laps as you want, come back and get beer each lap, stick around for the food and music, or go home, change and come back. Either way, just be there and have a great time.
Join us August 17 for the NIMBA Series / KCV MTB XC Race at the Winona Lake Trails: The Northern Indiana Mountain Bike Association (NIMBA) does an amazing job building and maintaining mountain bike trails in the Michiana area, and their support of cycling is top notch. Come out to their fundraising race series stop in Winona Lake which helps support each of the local, northern Indiana mountain bike trails. Proceeds from the race go back to the Winona Lake Trails, as well as the Ride+Walk Warsaw+Winona Lake initiative.
For more details, check out our Events page.
Join us August 9 for the With Love Left Over Offroad Challenge (MTB & Run) at Kintionki Trails, Salamonie Reservoir: With Love Left Over is a non-profit that helps special needs children (fostered, abused, malnourished, fetal alcohol, etc.) with forever family care and bicycle enrichment programs to help rebuild their esteem and worth. They’re hosting the WLLO Off Road Challenge, consisting of a 9k or 32k mountain bike race starting at 8am, and a 9k and 16k trail run beginning at 10am. Racers can compete individually or as teams. On-site registration and check-in begins at 7am.