Options abound for group rides

Credit: "Joy Rides" depart from Gold Medal Park every Friday, sponsored by the Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition. Submitted image

Biking Guide 

Cycling can be more fun in a group — especially if riders are stopping at bakeries, riding without pants, buying a round of beer or traveling scenic trails. The following is a rundown of some of the local clubs and upcoming rides.

Birchwood Racing Team

The café has a racing team and cycling club that caters to everyone from racers to mountain bikers, triathletes, cyclocrossers and casual riders. Sunday coffee rides and monthly women’s rides are open to the public. The club comes with the added bonus of Birchwood food to end long rides.

Cost of membership: $115 per year, with discounts available after the first year in exchange for team duties

When they meet: Sunday coffee rides leave at 10 a.m. from Birchwood Café at 3311 E. 25th St. Helmets and road bikes are required; pace is typically 15-17 miles per hour. A Women’s Ride is the first Thursday of each month, leaving from Birchwood at 6 p.m.

Upcoming rides: Birchwood Road Race, July 25 at Bender Park in Henderson, Minn. An 18-mile loop with just over 300 feet of elevation gain/lap and a hill finish. Fruit and treats by Birchwood.

Website: www.birchwoodbiketeam.com


Hiawatha Bicycling Club

Hosts about 60 rides per month for a variety of skills and desires, ranging from 15-100 miles in length. The socially-minded club offers many rides focused around sight-seeing, meals and charitable activities.

Cost of membership: $35 household membership, $25 regular membership

When they meet: Rides available nearly every day

Upcoming event: Recurring “Mediterranean Moods” rides leave from D’Amico & Sons at 50th & France. After the ride, the group chooses to “replace nearly all of our expended calories” at D’Amico.

Website: www.hiawathabike.org 


Major Taylor Bicycling Club of Minnesota

Named for an African American sprint champion cyclist, the club promotes cycling for the African American community, though rides are open to all.

Cost of membership: Individual $25, household $35

When they meet: Wednesday rides meet at Freewheel Bike Midtown Bike Center, 2834 10th Ave. S.

Upcoming event: Lake Mille Lacs Ride, July 25. An annual rite of summer for the club, the ride starts at Grand Casino Mille Lacs and heads around the lake for about 65 miles. The ride has at least three pit stops and ends with a buffet at the casino.

Website: www.majortaylorminnesota.org


Minneapolis Bicycle Racing Club

Founded in 1974, the club was formed for serious bike racers to operate like a European “team.” Today, the club’s summer rides range in distance and difficulty.

Cost of membership: $35 for volunteering members, $45 for non-volunteering members

When they meet: Beginner-friendly Saturday rides start at 44th & Brookside in Edina, followed by a gathering at Sebastian Joe’s for coffee and pastries. More difficult Sunday rides begin off the Midtown Greenway at the Punch Pizza parking lot. Easy Friday morning “Gentleman’s Rides” (ladies also welcome) leave from Bryant & 29th. All rides depart at 8 a.m.



Joy Ride

Hosted by the Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition. Every Friday the group highlights different aspects of Minneapolis. The ride is a “slow roll” welcome to cargo bikes and kids.

Cost: Free

When they meet: Fridays at 5 p.m. at the top of Gold Medal Park. “Some days we end at root beer floats in a sunshine filled park, some days we loop to Hopkins for a Depot Coffee House snack, sometimes we find a happy hour!”

Website: www.mplsbike.org, rides promoted on Facebook page



The club offers a choice of rides for road, recreation and fitness.

Cost of membership: No charge

When they meet: Tuesday and Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings

Upcoming rides: River Gorge Ride June 16 at 6:30 p.m., meet at East River Road at Summit Avenue; Circle the Lakes Ride June 23 at 6:30 p.m., meet at Franklin & Penn; Root Beer Float Ride June 30 at 6:30 p.m., meet at Bryn Mawr Park, root beer floats follow the ride

Website: www.mnspokesnfolks.com


Twin Cities Bicycling Club

The largest recreational biking club in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. Most members are adults at an intermediate, non-racer skill level. Rides are open to members and non-members.

Cost of membership: Household membership $45, individual membership $30

When they meet: Rides available daily

Upcoming rides: Minneapolis to St. Paul Explorer, June 1 at 10 a.m., covers streets and trails from Northeast to St. Paul with a lunch stop en route. Warehouse Bicycling Group leaves at 8:15 a.m. Saturday mornings from the North Loop Dunn Bros above the Cedar Lake Trail

Website: www.biketcbc.org


Grease Rag

The group empowers women/trans/femme cyclists through rides, shop nights and educational seminars.

Cost of membership: Donations welcome

When they meet: Open shop first and third Thursdays of the month from 7-9 p.m. at Sunrise Cyclery, 2901 Blaisdell Ave. Open shop second and fourth Tuesdays of the month from 7-9 p.m. at Recovery Bike Shop, 2504 Central Ave. NE. Cyclists learn how to do their own mechanical work.

Upcoming events: No Name Alleycat Race, a standing race at 6:30 p.m. the first Sunday of the month, meet at the bandshell at the northeast end of the Stone Arch bridge. No-spandex attitude, winner-take-all pool typically followed by winner-spend-all on beer. (The race concept is out of Milwaukee, designed as a chance for shop employees to participate in a race.) Annual Freedom From Pants ride is July 4.

Website: www.greaserag.org 


Freewheel Bike group rides

The bike shop offers weekly rides and a “commuter club” with access to shower facilities and bike storage.

Cost of membership: Commuter club fees are $110 for annual membership, $15 for 30-day monthly membership. Rides are free.

When they meet: Wednesday night road rides leave Midtown at 5:45 p.m., stop at the West Bank at 6 p.m. and depart for a 30-minute ride at a quick pace.

Upcoming events: Dirt Cup Mountain Bike Sprint Series, a 10.5-mile single track loop. Races alternate between Elm Creek Park Reserve in Maple Grove and Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve in Savage. Dates include June 3, 10, 17, 24 and Aug. 5, 12, 19 and 26.

Website: www.freewheelbike.com