The Twin Cities Bicycling Club is a meeting place for area cyclists. The club organizes a plethora of rides throughout the year, which vary in levels of intensity and distance. The number of rides scheduled diminishes during the winter months, though many members tough it out and keep attending rides, allowing only extreme weather conditions to stop them. The club will hold its eighth annual weeklong trip to Texas Hills country this January, in Marble Hills, Texas, located 50 miles from Austin.
In addition to free participation in rides, benefits include discounts at local bike shops, access to the website as a forum, and an annual swap meet. Sage Tauber, one of the club’s most active members, shared her own experience with the club.
When did you join?
I joined TCBC last summer after moving to Minneapolis from California. I joined the club to meet people who share my passion for cycling, but I soon realized it was also a great way to learn my way around the Twin Cities. TCBC offers rides all over the metro area, so I tried to do as many rides as I could when I moved here. Not only did I meet lots of great people, but I quickly learned how to get around the cities on a bike. I was amazed by the number of trails and routes in and around the Twin Cities – I didn’t realize it was such a bike-friendly place to live! It made me really feel lucky to live here.
How many rides have you been on? What significance does mileage have to members?
Biking is my favorite past time, so I’ve been on more rides than I can count! During the summer, I did a TCBC ride almost every day of the week. There are so many rides to choose from, so I would try to do an evening ride after work near my house as a way to get in a workout after sitting in front of a computer all day and to see friends in the club. On the weekends during the summer I enjoyed traveling to Wisconsin for the longer, more challenging rides through the hilly, scenic countryside.
The club tracks each member’s mileage by having riders sign in at the beginning of each ride. It’s a fun incentive for members to push themselves to meet their personal cycling and fitness goals. Also, many cyclists like to track their mileage over the course of a season or year to be able to compare from year to year – or for a little friendly competition with friends. The club has an annual awards banquet where the members with the most miles are recognized for their effort and dedication to the club and the sport.
I’m guessing the bike club is more about recreational biking, but also works to educate bikers. Is this accurate?
The club puts great emphasis on ensuring safe riding practices. The ride leaders are all trained in bike safety and play a significant role in ensuring that the members ride safely and set a good example when riding as part of the club around the metro area. Riders that are new to cycling or new to riding in a group can be assured that more experienced riders are on hand to help educate them about proper gear, bike maintenance, and safe riding.
The TCBC website provides a lot of great information and the schedule of daily rides that anyone can access at www.biketcbc.org. Non-members can join a ride for just $2.00 to try out the club before becoming a member. The ride leaders always provide their contact information on the schedule, so you can contact them if you have questions about a specific ride and whether it’s appropriate for your skill level and interest. Although there are less rides offered during the fall and winter, many club members ride all year-round! It’s a really fun way to ride with a great group of healthy, active people!