Volunteer

Are you a La Crosse local? You can help out in three different ways! Volunteer on your bike as a Ride Ambassador, helping visitors as they leave town on the self-guided road rides. Each day of the festival has featured and optional routes, from 23 to 82 miles; your choice. Or take a three-hour shift to greet and orient visitors at the Registration Tent in Cameron Park. Or you could volunteer as a Shepherd to ride with the short, family-friendly guided interest rides (history tours, ice cream rides and social events).

Registration Tent
Ride Ambassador
Ride Shepherd

For more information email intern@explorelacrosse.com. All volunteers receive a complimentary “Premium” registration, with discounts, drink and food specials, and thank-you gifts (including a volunteer t-shirt!)

Open Streets La Crosse is looking for volunteers for the event. 

Set up 9 am-12 pm

Event Volunteers 12-4 pm
Tear down Volunteers 4-6 pm

Contact Carolyn Dvorak for questions and to sign-up: carolyn.dvorak@WisconsinBikeFed.org

 

 

 

 

 

 

La Crosse Area Bicycle Festival!

September 1-4, 2017

Enjoy two-wheeled bliss through the scenic valleys of the Mississippi River!

All rides leave from Cameron Park (unless noted) and are FREE to the public.

Road rides outside of La Crosse are self-supported, self-timed and self-guided. We’ll have suggested start windows, turn-by-turn smartphone routes online, and maps with cue sheets available for free at Cameron Park. Featured road rides also have volunteer ride ambassadors who will leave from Cameron Park at staggered times throughout the start window. Routes out of town are outlined on free maps and cue sheets, with turns marked on the road in the city. Guided interest rides are suitable for families, kids, and easy riding. They leave from Cameron Park at the designated time, make frequent stops, and have a leader to guide the ride through the city

Free Registration

All rides are free to the public. Road rides outside of La Crosse are self-supported, self-timed and self-guided.

fat bike

 

Premium Registration

Cost
  • December – January $25
  • February – May $30
  • June 1 – July 31 $35
  • August 1 – August 31 $40
  • September $45

Benefits

  • Map Booklet
  • Bike Festival T-shirt (not guaranteed if registered after 8/18/17)
  • First Dibs: Priority Pedal Paddle Registration*
  • First Dibs: Priority Dark La Crosse Ride Registration*
  • First Dibs:  Wiscorps “Marshing through History” Registration*
  • Discounts to Restaurants & Businesses
  • Entry to Saturday Night Tour De Pearl End of Tour Party
  • (Free Food & Drinks)
  • Gift cards to Cameron Park Farmers Market**
  • More…

**first 50 premium registrations *first 20 premium registrations

Schedule

 

Registration is FREE! (Some individual fees for space-limited in-town tours or social events, but registration, most rides, and ALL Featured and Optional Road Rides, are completely FREE!)

Featured and Optional Road Rides outside of La Crosse are self-supported and self-guided.  We’ll have turn-by-turn routes online for your smartphone or GPS, and maps with cue sheets available for free at Cameron Park — riders can leave on their own at any time that day.  Featured road rides have volunteer Ride Ambassadors who will leave from Cameron Park at select times between 7-9AM, but you don’t have to wait for them:  Routes out of town are outlined on free maps and cue sheets, with turns marked on the road in city limits.  Register now to get schedule updates ahead of time, and weather updates on the weekend of the event.

Most Guided Interest Rides are suitable for families, kids, and easy riding. Most leave from Cameron Park at the designated time, make frequent stops, and have a leader and volunteers to shepherd the ride through the city.

Thursday
 8/31/17

4PM – 8PM Optional Packet Pick-Up — Join us in the backroom of Earl’s Grocery and Saloon for packet pick-up, information about the festival, and a friendly welcome to La Crosse.

5:30 Moon Tunes — join most of La Crosse for an evening at Moon Tunes: a free concert in Riverside Park with local legends Blind Baby Olin & the Work Benches.  Brought to you by Valley View Rotary, with bike valet from Smith’s Bike Shop, Beer by Bike Brigade, and Blue Steel Bikes!

Friday
 9/1/17

Join us at our tent in Cameron Park!  We start off the festival weekend on the small scale, testing out a newly-created route heading east into the Coulee Experimental Forest, and a very short Optional Road Ride.  Back in town, a mountain bike ride, a cute bike meet-up and bike vendors at the Cameron Park Farmer’s Market ease you into the fun.  Mechanics from Blue Steel Bikes will provide pit service at the registration tent in Cameron Park.

Featured:  Middle Ridge Ramble, 59 miles, 7-9AM window start.  A completely new route this year, the Middle Ridge Ramble climbs the winding roads of the Coulee Experimental Forest to the east of town.

Optional:  Grandad Bluff Loop — 23 miles  : 7-9AM window start. The shorter Grandad Bluff Loop, a local after-work favorite, leaves town on the exact same route as our featured ride, but turns back for a much shorter (but still very scenic) ride, with a stop at the amazing Grandad overlook.

4PM to Dusk, Cameron Park Farmer’s Market — On Friday evening, our registration tent in Cameron Park will be surrounded by local farmers, crafters, and vendors — come by to shop, eat, explore, eat.  Did I mention eat?

4 – 7:30PM, Cargo Bikes in Cameron Park:  Join representatives from Madison’s Cargo Bike Shop  to chat about cargo bikes and experience them firsthand.  Cargo bikes aren’t just for hauling stuff; they’re also great for families, kids, and commuting. Cool and unique bikes will be available for demo rides, including bakfietsen (“boxlike”) as well as longtail bikes and bikes with electric pedal assist systems.

4PM Cute Bike Meet-Up — Got a cute bike? Streamers?  Baskets?  Bell?  Flowers? All of the above? Bring your bike for a cute bike meet-up at Cameron Park Farmer’s Market, and you may get a special gift to help show off your cute bike while you’re around town.

5PM  Hear, Here Poetry Bike Tour  Bring your bike and cell phone to hear all-new additions to the award-winning Hear, Here art and history project.  Community members submitted poems about downtown La Crosse; six of those poems were chosen to be included in the downtown archive of stories.

5:40PM Advanced Mountain Bike Ride Join the Smith’s Bike Shop regular mountain bike ride, leaving from Smith’s Bike Shop @ 5:30pm, and swinging by our registration tent in Cameron Park immediately after, before setting off on a 10-20 mile route usually determined on the fly during the ride.   We’ll head up the Vista trail to HPT (Upper Hixon).  While higher levels of mountain bike abilities are expected, the group may split into smaller groups determined by skill level, usually regroups at the top of major climbs and trail intersections. Expect to ride for about 2 hours on technical singletrack.  Rocks, roots, and fast elevation changes challenge even the most skilled rider.

6PM Friday Night Lights —  Bring your bike up the bluff  and come play in the dirt! It’s a social event for mountain biking at the new Upper Hixon Trailhead.  With food, drinks, and bikes, the fun will last past sundown when we set up lights at the Pump Track.

 

Saturday
 9/2/17

 

Let’s get down to business — Saturday at the Bike Fest is a day to RIDE. Many different lengths of the Norski Tur allows you to choose your challenge, with an option for the even shorter Stoddard-Chaseburg route.  Mechanics from Blue Steel Bikes will provide pit service at the registration tent in Cameron Park.  Back in town, a long list of family-friendly rides and adult-friendly social events keep the festival rolling, including the second-annual partnership with the it-has-to-be-seen-to-be-believed Beer By Bike Brigade, and the wrap-up of Pearl Street Brewery’s Tour de Pearl.

  

Featured: Norski Tur: 50, 75, 100, 125 miles options.  Explore the diverse geography southeast of La Crosse, settled by Norwegian immigrants. Long valleys, open fields and the occasional ski jump make these routes unique, and if you want, you can choose the longer versions for a full day in the saddle.                                                               

Optional:  Stoddard-Chaseburg 38 mile This popular loop heads south out of La Crosse on a flat, straight highway; then up a quiet farm valley before returning up a challenging hill.

8AM to 1PM, Cameron Park Farmer’s Market — On Saturday morning, our registration tent in Cameron Park will again be surrounded by local farmers, crafters, and vendors — come by to shop, eat, explore, eat.

8AM to 1PM,  Cargo Bikes in Cameron Park:   Join representatives from Madison’s Cargo Bike Shop to chat about cargo bikes and experience them firsthand.  Cargo bikes aren’t just for hauling stuff; they’re also great for families, kids, and commuting. Cool and unique bikes will be available for demo rides, including bakfietsen (“boxlike”) as well as longtail bikes and bikes with electric pedal assist systems.

9AM Pedal / Paddle  Meet at Cameron Park and bicycle to Island Outdoors on French Island — Register at EventBright  for this free event, and choose from paddle boards, kayaks, and canoes, for a leisurely and family-friendly exploration of the backwaters of the Mississippi.  You may also bring your own watercraft.  (Personal flotation devices required; space is limited so please register.) Limited to the first 20; **Sign up Required – Premium Registrants have priority in reserving space on this ride.

11AM Historic South Side La Crosse Neighborhood Tour  — join local historian and emeritus professor Charles Lee on a two-wheeled tour of the architecture and history of south side neighborhoods.  An easy 5 mile loop.

Noon Karma Class:  Take a break from the saddle and join Root Down Yoga for a three-mile outing from Cameron Park to their studio on Caledonia Street. There you can stretch out, recover, and challenge your mind and body in a hot all levels yoga class.  This 60 minute “Karma Class” is only $5, and 100% of the proceeds go to a local charity.  Free rental mats and towels for Bike Festival riders.  Leaving Cameron Park at noon and returning by roughly 2:45pm.  Learn more about Root Down Yoga Studio here.

1PM Family / Kid-Friendly Mountain Bike Ride Guided ride around Upper Hixon Forest, mostly on beginner-level trails, with some intermediate. Meet at the trail head on Highway FA next to the NOAA weather ball, make time to explore your skills on the new pump track, and then venture into the beautiful bluffs of the Driftless Region.  If there are enough riders to split into varying skill-level groups, we will do that.  Otherwise expect to ride 4-7 miles in about an hour.

2PM Hidden Parks and Scenic La Crosse:  Take this loop to see some of the city’s less-well-known parks and look back at La Crosse from across the river from Pettibone Park. At ten to twelve miles in length, this loop crosses the Big Blue Bridges, and should take about an hour and a half.

3PM Ice Cream Rides  Hands down, our most popular rides! The short routes are great for families, kids, and riders of all abilities on any kind of bike.  This ride will feature multiple popular ice cream shops, and the ride will be around six miles long.  Leaders will take quiet city streets and bike paths to get to the goods.

4:30PM Beer by Bike Brigade  You have got to see this once-a-month summer bar hop for responsible and fun-loving adults.  As always, meet up at the Riverside International Peace Park (at the north end of Riverside Park) at 4:30 PM for a night of fun that starts at 5. Bring your phone, money, bike, lock, front and rear bike lights, and sense of adventure. Follow BBBB  for updates on stops and itinerary.  As BBBB says, “No sign-ups, no dues, no restrictions. Bring your fun attitude & your bike lights 🙂 ”

TOUR de PEARL End-of-Tour PARTY at Riverside Park — details TBA!

 

Sunday
 9/3/17

 

Sunday we ride across the blue bridges and into Minnesota, where the climbs are still real, but the valleys are more open and the views are spectacular.  The featured  Driftless Region’s Most Scenic Ride (or DRMSR), showcases wide-open landscapes and four good hills. The optional Apple Blossom ride leaves La Crosse by the same route and explores the same region as the DRMSR, but is done in just 35 miles.  Not your speed?  Try the 8th annual La Crosse Gravel Classic, a 56-mile mixed-surface bike tour.   Meanwhile, back in La Crosse, the city’s first-ever Open Streets event brings fun, shopping and crowds to historic downtown. Mechanics from Blue Steel Bikes will provide pit service at the registration tent in Cameron Park

Featured Road Ride: Driftless Region’s Most Scenic Ride, 7-9AM window start   (DRMSR, options for 59 or 82 miles) This challenging ride has four big climbs, including steep and scenic Tschumper Road. But cyclists are rewarded with may rest stops and stunning views of the Mississippi and Root River valleys.

Optional Road Ride:  Apple Blossom, 7-9AM window start. A quick and scenic loop out from La Crosse through Minnesota’s apple orchards, with one fairly gradual climb, great views over the Mississippi, and a sweeping descent into La Crescent.

8AM Gravel Classic.   It’s the 8th annual Gravel Classic, which traverses 50 or so miles of gravel (and paved) roads in the bluffs of Southeast Minnesota, just across the Mississippi River from La Crosse.   This unsupported ride traditionally appeals to a variety of riders – those who like to push the pace as well as those who just want to enjoy the journey. All are welcome. The event is free, but you’ll need to register online or at the Cameron Park registration.

9AM Pedal / Paddle to Goose Island (South) Meet at Cameron Park and bicycle to Goose Island with guide John Clark  to explore the Mississippi backwaters to the south of the island.  Starting with an easy 8 mile trail/street ride to Goose Island, south of La Crosse.  From there, explore the pristine backwaters of the Mississippi at 10:30 a.m.  Limited number of kayaks available at no cost or bring your own, (Personal flotation devices required; space is limited so please register.) **Sign up Required – Premium Registrants have priority in reserving space on this ride.

Noon to 4. Open Streets La Crosse! Take advantage of Open Streets La Crosse on Sunday afternoon this Labor Day weekend.  Enjoy car-free spaces where people and families can exercise and play; at the same time, enjoying neighborhood businesses, social and physical activities. Bring your family and meet your friends and neighbors to walk, bike, stroll or skate along the mile long route.  Enjoy art, music and games and food as La Crosse joins the international movement of Open Streets events for the first time ever. Brought to you by the La Crosse City Vision Foundation, the City of La Crosse, Downtown Mainstreet Inc., the Wisconsin Bike Fed, and local businesses and institutions.  Want more information, or to volunteer to help with Open Streets?  Contact Carolyn Dvorak.

1PM Meet your Maker.  A completely new ride, Meet Your Maker will showcase two local bike manufacturers, Blue Steel Bike and Wyatt Bicycles. The ride will be less than 10 miles with a few stops along the way; leaving Cameron Park at 1pm, and returning between 3:30-4:00.   At the first stop, owner Wyatt Hrudka will walk you through Wyatt Bicycle’s frame-manufacturing process. Wyatt Bicycles has been importing bikes from Asia but has transitioned to producing the frames in-house. Wyatt’s focus is on making affordable production frames right here in the U.S.A. Come and see this growing business, as it evolves into something awesome.  The next stop is Blue Steel Bike’s shop on the north side of La Crosse. This shop specializes in hand crafting each frame, one at a time, to each rider’s specification. Owner Paul Reardon has been building frames in La Crosse for eight years. We will discuss varied materials including Chromoly, Stainless Steel, and Titanium, and the different joining techniques we use in frame building. There may even be a brazing and T.I.G. welding demo!

3PM Trail Ride. Want to ride, but prefer trails?  How about a family- friendly trail ride to the new Great River State Trailhead in Onalaska, using paved and unpaved off-street trails?  This flat, 14-mile roundtrip trail ride heads out from Cameron Park to Great River State Trailhead in Onalaska, returning by city streets, trails, and the new bike/ped bridge.

4-7PM-ish  “Riders of a Certain Age” At a certain age “We’ve no place to be, no clock to punch” but miles of road yet to travel.  This ride embraces those of us who have earned our ‘wheels’ and are ready to embrace the road at our own pace! With multiple lengths of in-town slow riding. 

6PM and 8PM Dark Tour The La Crosse Public Library Archives and Local History Department takes you on a bike tour of the . . . seedier . . . side of local history.  This tour will visit the old “red light” district, and pass former speakeasies, gangster hangouts, and the occasional murder scene.   Not all content of this tour will be entirely appropriate for young ears.  Spaces are limited, Sign up Required! Premium Registrants have priority in reserving space on this ride. Free-will donations to the La Crosse Public Library are encouraged to help subsidize this event!

Monday
 9/4/17

 

After three days of festival riding, we calm down with two lengths of Barista’s Epic Coffee Ride, plus one challenging twist for single speeders.  The 55-mile route into Minnesota stops midway at a favorite coffee shop before one good climb. The shorter 44-mile version avoids the big climb, and it’s perfect as an option for ambitious single speed riders. Or stay around town with the Pedal Paddle, Wiscorps ride, or family-friendly beach ride..   All rides will be back in time for travel for out-of-town visitors who need to head home.  Mechanics from Blue Steel Bikes will provide pit service at the registration tent in Cameron Park.

Featured Road Ride: Barista’s Epic Coffee Ride, (55 miles) 7-9AM window start  It’s the Barista’s Epic, but with a twist: one challenging climb after the midway point and eleven more miles of distance.  You still get the great scenery of the Root River Valley, and the mid-ride snacks at Barista’s, but now you can try to burn off the calories with a loop down to Brownsville.

Optional Road Ride:  Barista’s Epic Coffee Ride(44 miles)  7-9AM window start  Shorter than some of the rides on previous days of the festival, this moderately hilly road ride into Minnesota stops midway in Houston for coffee, smoothies, treats or sandwiches at Barista’s Coffee Shop.  Ride it as a challenging single-speed route (single speeders meet at 8AM for 8:15 rollout) or on your geared bike for a bit of a break on the last day of the festival.

8:30 AM Bike to Hike with the Outdoor Recreation Alliance:  Meet in Cameron Park to bike to Hixon for a guided hike with the Outdoor Recreation Alliance, returning by 12:30 pm. Bring your bike, bike lock, hiking shoes, water, and sense of adventure!  ORA is working to make La Crosse into America’s outdoor recreation destination for silent sport and human powered activities while contributing to the economic growth of the 7 Rivers Region of La Crosse.

9AM Pedal / Paddle to Goose Island (North)  Meet at Cameron Park and bicycle to Goose Island with guide John Clark  to explore the Mississippi backwaters to the north of the island.  Starting with an easy 8 mile trail/street ride to Goose Island, south of La Crosse.  From there, explore the pristine backwaters of the Mississippi at 10:30 a.m.  Limited number of kayaks available at no cost or bring your own, (Personal flotation devices required; space is limited so please register.) **Sign up Required – Premium Registrants have priority in reserving space on this ride.

10AM Marshing through History:  Join Wiscorps — the Wisconsin youth conservation corps — for a guided, family-friendly bike tour through the history and ecosystem of the La Crosse River Marsh.  Bring a bike that can ride on crushed gravel or dirt trails, and be prepared to ride 7 miles at a slow pace.  Leaving Cameron Park at 10AM to arrive at Myrick Center by 10:20; space limited to 30, **Sign up Required – Premium Registrants have priority in reserving space on this ride.

Noon: Life’s a Beach. Parent and kids ride to a beach from Cameron Park.  Bring your bike, bike lock, water, swimsuits and towels on this family-friendly ride. 

 

Volunteer

Are you a La Crosse local?  You can help out in three different ways! Volunteer on your bike as a Ride Ambassador, helping visitors as they leave town on the self-guided road rides.  Each day of the festival has featured and optional routes, from 23 to 82 miles; your choice.  Or take a three-hour shift to greet and orient visitors at the Registration Tent in Cameron Park. Or you could volunteer as a Shepherd to ride with the short, family-friendly guided interest rides (history tours, ice cream rides and social events).

Registration Tent
Ride Ambassador
Ride Shepherd

For more information email intern@explorelacrosse.com.  All volunteers receive a complimentary “Premium” registration, with discounts, drink and food specials, and thank-you gifts (including a volunteer t-shirt!)

 

Open Streets La Crosse is looking for volunteers for the event.  

Set up 9 am-12 pm 
Volunteers will assist with setting up demonstration protected bike lane and other projects, direct vendors to their locations and answer questions

Event Volunteers 12-4 pm
Volunteers will direct participants to activities, refill water, pick up trash

Tear down Volunteers 4-6 pm
volunteers will assist with clean up

Contact Carolyn Dvorak to sign- up: carolyn.dvorak@WisconsinBikeFed.org

La Crosse County Convention & Visitors Bureau
Atten: Bicycling in the Driftless Region
410 Veterans Memorial Drive
La Crosse, WI 54601
(800) 658-9424 or (608) 782-2220

La Crosse Area Bicycle Festival - September 1-54 2016

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