23rd Recumbent Rally adds Amherst routes
What started as a way to introduce new comfort when riding a bicycle has turned into a go-to annual event, and this year, the Midwest Recumbent Rally celebrates 23 years.
“People come from all over to enjoy the camaraderie of riding with other recumbent bike and trike riders, enjoy the scenic routes on lightly traveled roads east of town, and see what is new and exciting,” said Jessie Bostic, sales and customer service, marketing and IT manager of the Hostel Shoppe.
“The best part of the rally is seeing people return year after year and how much they enjoy the tours and checking out other recumbent bikes and trikes,” Bostic said.
The rally will be held Friday and Saturday, Aug. 5 and 6, at the Hostel Shoppe, 3201 John Joanis Drive, Stevens Point, and Sunday, Aug. 7, at Lettie Jensen Community Center, Amherst. Rally hours begin with registration at 10 a.m. Friday with the rally until 7 p.m., then continue from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday with registration and check-in at 7 a.m., and Sunday features the Super Tour from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. beginning at the Lettie Jensen Community Center in Amherst.
Registration is available at the Hostel Shoppe or visit hostelshoppe.com/92/Midwest-Recumbent-Rally. Single day rates are $10 for Friday, $20 for Saturday and $15 for Sunday. Multiple-day rates are $25 for two days. For three days, the rate is $30.
The rally began in 1993 when Rolf Garthus, owner of Hostel Shoppe, discovered how much fun and how comfortable it was riding a recumbent bicycle. The rally drew people into the shop to try different recumbents out.
That first year, perhaps a dozen people participated in the rally. Today, it has grown to nearly 400 participants, including individuals, couples, groups and families.
“Kids can ride their own bikes, or in a trailer, as long as there is parental supervision,” Bostic said. “We have shorter routes that would work well for kids and families.”
Each year, organizers find challenges in coming up with the routes, especially during construction. The goal is to have an enjoyable and safe ride. This year, the Amherst route also will allow for some quieter routes with a variety of scenery, Bostic said.
Along with the ride, registration fees include seminars, exhibits and other select events each day. Itinerary includes:
Friday, Aug. 5: Registration and check-in begins at 7 a.m. Ice cream ride and social from noon to 4 p.m., individual 10-mile ride, map included. An electric assist seminar will be at 4 p.m. by Garthus at Hostel Shoppe.
Saturday, Aug. 6: Registration and check-in begins at 7 a.m. The 62-mile and 47-mile routes begin at 7:30 a.m., 34-mile and 20-mile routes begin at 8 a.m., and the 13-mile route begins at 8:15 a.m. Routes will be marked. Test rides will be in the Hostel Shoppe parking lot beginning at 10 a.m. A swap meet will run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lunch will be from noon to 2 p.m. A seminar will be at 3:30 p.m.
Sunday, Aug. 7: Hostel Shoppe is closed. Super Tour begins at 8 a.m. at Lettie Jensen Community Center, Amherst, with parking available at Amherst High School. Routes are 8, 14, 28 and 41 miles. Lunch is from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Jensen Center.
There are limited numbers of lunches and T-shirts available for purchase. For more information, visit hostelshoppe.com or call 715-341-4340.