Join Today

1,439 registered to ride in Milwaukee on December 2, 2023 and supported our programs and advocacy goals making our hearts grow 3 sizes this holiday season.

You all must have been extra nice this year because the weather cooperated and we split the goal posts on two rainy cold days in Milwaukee leading to a record number of riders taking part in the fundraiser event. 40 degrees, cloudy and low wind, made for a joyous day on the streets celebrating biking and the holiday season.

hundreds of holiday costumed people gather before the ride in the parking lot around fire pits and tents
Thank you to our friends at Wheel And Sprocket for their partnership in making biking better! Photo by: Zoe Finney for Bike Fed

There are always things to improve upon and plan for in a ride this size, but the joy in your faces and the onlookers surprised expressions, and maybe the only day all year that people driving are generally happy to see so many people on bikes, makes the Santa Cycle Rampage one of our favorite events all year.

The ride also brings so much exposure through the media, both traditional and social, to our cause and organization we are so excited you all make it a part of your holiday traditions.

Listen to the NPR story that ran nationally here !

Not just for Santa or Christmas. Happy Hanukkah! Photo by: Zoe Finney for Bike Fed

We spoke with so many riders for whom this was their first or second year riding and they all had a blast and said they’re were bringing more friends next year. We also tested a shorter route option for families and small kids who can’t quite go 12 miles, or maybe aren’t as confident a rider to be mixed in a group of thousands, and learned some good lessons and plan to bring that feature back in 2024. Also thanks to any folks who came form out of town, the ride has become a regional draw with Chicagoans crossing the cheddar curtain for some fun riding and we see addresses in our database from Iowa, Minnesota, and across Illinois!

The Bike Fed wants everyone to enjoy being on a bike, even if they can not pedal themselves. This year we partnered with Milwaukee Center For Independence and used a donated WIKE trailer to take Narkeez, one of their clients, along on the ride. Thank you to Dustin, our volunteer who pedaled and to the MCFI staff who helped coordinate!

Narkeez gets snugged in the WIKE trailer
large group of costumed riders pedal the streets. In front is a young kid dressed as an elf and waving
Even the Elves get involved! Photo by: Zoe Finney for Bike Fed

If you are reading this and didn’t register or pay there is still time to make a donation to support our work in 2023. Click here : any amount is greatly appreciated. If you have friends who rode, but didn’t register kindly ask them to consider it. It takes lots of staff time and money to plan the ride, secure police support, permits, port o potties (yes – we will get more next year), buy swag (yes, we will have cool items next year), organize pick up (yes – we have ideas to streamline for next year) and so many more small tasks along the way.

Stay tuned for information and 2024 ride details, December 7th, as we research what it takes to get the ride into the Guinness Book of World Records. We plan to open registration in early October. Follow Bike Fed on social channels or sign up for our e-newsletter on the main page.

Drone and on ground footage of the 2023 event

You can always enjoy the Madison Santa Cycle Rampage the week after Milwaukee – so save the date for Saturday, December 14, 2024 to celebrate in Dane County.

And lastly, we know there are similar (albeit smaller rides) of the same theme in Eau Claire, Minneapolis, Appleton, Kansas City, Boston, England and more! If you are too far away to get to Milwaukee check out your local bike friends to see if there is a local ride.

Thank you to our sponsors. Please consider visiting them all year round!