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While Bike Week (September 12-19) this year was still kept fairly low-key, there was much fun to be had whether you decided to get out and ride or simply post up with some popcorn at home for Bicycle Film Festival Wisconsin.

This year was and remains a critical time for those most in need. The pandemic has served up some very compounding challenges everywhere and food insecurity has prevailed. Again this year,  we encouraged communities across the state to organize Pedal for Good (P4G) food and supply drives. Smith’s Bike Shop in La Crosse, the Grand Chute Bike Ped Committee, and our very own staff at the Bike Fed in Milwaukee all held their own drives including a P4G bike ride scavenger hunt put on by Dream Bikes Milwaukee. Reports from Milwaukee pulled in just over 400 lb of food and supplies. Thank you to everyone including Wheel and Sprocket and Wisconsin residents for donating to food pantries across the state!

One of our newest team members, Safe Routes to School Coordinator in Dane County, Caitlin Hussey reports:

“Bike Week was an exciting opportunity to learn new routes, meet other cyclists, and enjoy some good eats (and refreshments) on the commuter paths. I joined two group rides, Monday 40 and the Madison Women’s Cycling Club, and continued to participate in their rides after Bike Week. The commuter stops offered a tasty variety… my two personal favorites (at separate stops) HOMEMADE CHEDDAR BACON WAFFLES WITH FRESH MAPLE SYRUP and beer samples (yep, for breakfast).

Some of our other favorite moments from Bike Week include the Bike Fed’s Cycling without Age courses in the Fox Cities area. These training sessions teach volunteer  “pilots” how to bring the amazing feeling of riding a bicycle to those who are not able to pedal on their own, along with fresh air and a fun social experience, on state-of-the-art trishaw bicycles! 

In addition, we loved seeing nearly a hundred Milwaukee residents out for the 4th annual  Promise Zone Bike Ride, hosted by local community organization Northwestside Community Development Corporation. This northside community has been hit hard by disinvestment, in the form of dilapidated housing, lack of job access, clean water, and safe streets for all users of the road. The tour focused on NWSCDCs and MMSD’s community collaborations on stormwater management, new street projects coming to the area, and of course simply being together as the Pandemic in 2020 has kept everyone apart when we all needed one another the most. 

As part of the Bike Week celebration, the Bike Fed also hosted Bicycle Film Festival Wisconsin. We were honored that over 80 promotional partners helped us get the word out through newsletters and social media posts. We also wish to extend an enthusiastic Thank You to everyone who purchased tickets. We hope everyone enjoyed watching the  international collection of short films that represented the fun and freedom of cycling throughout the world!

Bike Week would not be possible without the generous support of Wisconsin residents, community organizations, and small businesses celebrating everything by bike. This year the Bike Fed would like to give a  special thanks to our main sponsors Pacific Cycle and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.