Pi(e) Day Ride Report

Every year on Pi Day (3/14), some friends and I take a bike ride to a pie shop. It’s that time of year when the snowbanks are melting, the evenings are getting longer, and we’re itching to get our bikes out and ride again. Besides, there is something rational about celebrating the world’s most well known irrational constant with a bicycle ride topped off by deliciousness baked into a flaky crust. No matter what kind of bike you ride, we all have pi in common.

Mmmmm, delicious cherry pie!

Now that I’m on the board of directors of the Bike Fed, I figured we could add the Bike Fed to our reasons to celebrate the coming of spring. When I floated the idea to the Bike Fed’s Executive Director, Dave Cieslewicz, he said OK on one condition. We had to start and end the ride with a party at the Bike Fed’s Madison office, which was burdened with a large supply of leftover beer from the “Drinks With Dave” event. Can do.

So we held a Pi Day event that the Bike Fed hosted. 32 people turned out. It was a blast!

The 3.14 mile ride for Pie.

Our ride took us from the Bike Fed down some prime urban bikeways (the downtown lakeside segment of Madison’s Capital City Trail, then the Southwest Commuter Path), to our pie shop destination: Humble Sweet and Savory Pies, 10 S. Allen St., near the corner of Regent and Allen. Magically, their location is exactly pi miles away from the Bike Fed office! (Well Google Maps says 3.1 miles, but prove me wrong.)

Thanks for adding the deliciousness to our ride Humble!

Humble is a new business run by sisters Shelly Cross and Jill Long, who moved to Madison from the South a couple years ago. They had gamely baked and donated tons of pie (on Pi Day no less, the Black Friday of pie shops). They surprised us by decorating their sour cherry slab pie as an inspired work of bicycle art. It was such a masterpiece, it pained me to cut and serve it – until I tasted it. In return we rewarded them with a Bike Fed organizational membership, which Dave Cieslewicz presented with great fanfare while our crowd of riders applauded and cheered.

Readers, as you can see by their cute Tippi Hedron inspired pie video below, you’ll love Humble. Show your Bike Fed membership card and enjoy 10% off all orders from the case.

We rode through the sunset on yet more prime urban bikeways (the University Avenue contraflow lane, and car-free State Street), back to the Bike Fed office to rekindle old friendships and form new ones over bikes, beer, and did I mention there was incredible pie?

Yes, we have valet parking for fat bikes.

The ride was a Bike Fed membership drive and fundraiser. Each rider joined, renewed or donated to the Bike Fed at least $31.42 (pi x10, sorry for all the pi puns; I know you get it by now). For pie, drinks, unbeatable camaraderie, and the opportunity to step up and support the organization that has our backs wherever and whenever we ride in Wisconsin, it was a bargain. We gained 24 new or renewing Bike Fed members, and raised $1,084.36.

It took a little chutzpah to commit to a group ride on March 14 in Wisconsin, when the weather can dish up anything. But we got lucky with clear skies and 40s temps.

Ride on Wisconsin, the spring bicycling season is here!


About Peter Gray

A committed bicycle commuter and recreational cyclist, Peter is a the chairman of the Board of Directors for the Bike Fed. He is also chair of Madison’s biggest annual one-day fundraising bike ride event, Bike For Boys & Girls Club. Peter works as Director of Executive Search (translation: he’s a recruiter) at The QTI Group. Clients have gotten used to seeing him arrive for meetings with windblown helmet-hair. On weekends, his wife and their 3 kids join him for adventures and errands by bike – sometimes joyfully, sometimes grudgingly. And of course, he has a bunch of bikes. Most are vintage rescues he lovingly restored. Don’t get him started!

3 thoughts on “Pi(e) Day Ride Report

  1. Can I join this ,bike fed , if I have a ebike,??? just purchased a electric trike from Len’s bike in Madison, and want to get out and get in shape. I am 75 years old and have never been without a bike since age 12. Do you have events in the Milwaukee area???

    Thanks , Judie Pieper

    • Hi Judie, this is Dave Schlabowske from the Milwaukee office of the Bike Fed. You bet you can join if you only have an bike! You can join online by clicking the link here or come to our office at 3618 W. Pierce Street, right off the Hank Aaron State Trail and the Menomonee Valley Passage. I did ride for pie by myself, but I promise to have a Pi Ride in Milwaukee next year! We have plenty of other fun rides and events here in Milwaukee until then though.

      • Judie,

        Dave beat me to it. What he said! Welcome to the Bike Fed, you’ve come to the right place.

        Peter Gray

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