5/28/08 – PedalGR Ride!

PedalGR Ride, meeting at 6:15pm on Wednesday, 5/28/08 at Founder’s Brewing Company, 235 Grandville Ave SW

Spread the word and tell your friends (better yet, bring them with you).  Hopefully I’ll have http://www.pedalgr.com/ up soon.

 Here is the route:

View Larger Map

Need to Know:

  • This is a no-drop ride.  Nobody in the group will be left behind. 
  • There are lots of hills.  Bring your granny gear.  Lots of fun downhills too!
  • COBBLESTONE!  There are two cobblestone roads left in GR.  We’ll ride down one of them.
  • There is a “shortcut” with about 5 short sections of steps to go down.  We will help each other (this is a friendly ride) carry the bikes down them if someone has trouble.
  • Ride is 16 miles and should take approximately 2 hours.
  • Water and portable snack food are recommended.
  • HELMETS ARE REQUIRED on Rapid Wheelmen Club rides.

A few highlights include:

Although we will not be stopping often to take photographs, cameras are highly encouraged to document our journey. Please contact me with any questions.

Remember, having fun and riding safely are the two most important goals!  Hope to see you there!

 EDIT – 5/21/08: I rode the route last night and it’s pretty hilly, so I cut 2 miles off the route (we’ll have to ride through Cheshire business district on another ride) so we can finish close to the two hour time frame.  I’m also in the process of seeing if we can get a quick 5 minute tour of Newberry Place, the new co-housing community on Belknap Hill.

5/14/08 – PedalGR Cadence

The inaugural PedalGR went off without a hitch! I wasn’t sure how many people to really expect, since I had only publicized the ride through the Rapid Wheelmen ride calendar, the internet, and word of mouth. Plus, there just happened to be a giant Obama rally and some chilly, cloudy weather.

Happily, people did show up. Mary, who recognized me from a WMMBA (West Michigan Mtn. Biking Assoc.) meeting was the first. Then my wife Amy, Becky and her son Logan, and Paul slowly trickled in by around 6:20. Paul was having dérailleur issues, and wasn’t able to join us for the ride.

We headed off around 6:30 (I’m planning to start on time for future rides) and headed up the hill for our first big climb. The first major site was the recently restored former D.A. Blodgett Home for Children. This is far and away one of my favorite buildings in the city. They did a FANTASTIC job restoring it.

We then wandered through Ottawa Hills, admiring all the beautiful brick houses. The route looped back on itself to go past the Iroquois School (on sale for only $3 million), so it didn’t just SEEM like we were going in circles, we actually were.

Approaching the halfway point, we went down the big hill on the gravel section of Reeds Lake Blvd, passing by the infamous Dr. Stokes’ 10,000 sq. ft mansion. Other highlights included passing GR Christian High, the former Catholic Archdiocese building, and rolling down Buchanan with the downtown skyline, and Founder’s off in the distance. The sun had finally come out and the light on the buildings was beautiful.

I’m sorry that I don’t have any photos. I will make this a priority for the next ride. Feel free to bring your small cameras as well to take on bike shots.

Thanks to everyone who showed up and/or has expressed an interest in the ride. Please spread the word and bring a friend.   This is a slow ride, made to get the people who say “I don’t want to do a group ride because I’ll just hold them up” out on their bicycles.  The more the merrier and I will make sure that no one gets dropped and left on their own.

I’ll post the next route by Monday or Tuesday. The May 28th route is NE Grand Rapids and includes a cobblestone road, a giant earth sculpture, and a couple short sets of stairs (going down of course).

Welcome to Pedal GR!

Hi, this blog is new and just beginning. If (when) people actually start showing up to my ride, I will try and make it more permanent, add new features, possibly get my own URL, etc.

So, show up to the ride, have fun, tell your friends, and join me in getting to know the city better. Information on the first ride, 5/14/08 is below.  The ride will take place on alternating Wednesdays after that.  The start time for the two May rides is 6:15.  The start time will change to 6:30 in June and July and we’ll see how it goes after that.
Your humble Ride Captain,

Joshua Duggan

5/14/08 – Pedal GR Inaugural Ride!

I’ve finished the route for the very first PedalGR Ride meeting at 6:15pm on Wednesday, 5/14/08 at Founder’s Brewing Company, 235 Grandville Ave SW. I hope people actually show up.

Here is the route:

View Larger Map

Need to Know:

  • There are three decent uphill sections
  • There will be brick roads, so be prepared if you’re riding your skinny tire bike
  • There is one ~.5 mile section of gravel road along Reed’s Lake
  • Ride is 19 miles and should take approximately 2 hours
  • Water and portable snack food are recommended
  • Kalamazoo at Alger Rd is under construction, but passable by bicycle

A few highlights include:

  • Newly restored D.A. Blodgett Home for Children
  • Historic Wealthy Theater
  • Iroquois School and Ottawa Hills neighborhood
  • Reed’s Lake in East Grand Rapids
  • Former home of the Catholic Archdiocese of Grand Rapids

Although we will not be stopping often to take photographs, cameras are highly encouraged to document our journey. Please contact me with any questions. Hope to see you there!