Welcome to the 2023 cycling season. Your Ganaraska Freewheelers Executives (Michel, Lilianne, Jennifer, Jen, and Ruth) and Ride Coordinators (Brian & Gail, Paul & Sue) are pleased to officially launch the 2023 cycling season.
Season Opener Ride: Friday, April 14 at 10:00 am
This year, our first official ride is on Friday, April 14 to keep our tradition of starting the season with Wayne and Brenda in Baltimore.
Even though COVID is behind us, members have thoroughly enjoyed the Bring Your Own Picnic (BYOP) post ride social format which will likely continue. Hopefully there will be some potlucks or semi potlucks and picnics interspersed, at the host’s discretion.
Even if you can’t ride, everyone is welcome to the après ride. Always nice to see and chat with everyone.
2023 Ride Coordinators
The 2023 Ride Calendar is up!
Brian H. will look after Friday rides until Gail takes over in August.
It was decided at the AGM in November that for 2023, Friday rides will normally start at 10:00 AM. All un-hosted rides will start at that time. However, members should feel free to host rides on Friday evening, or on Saturday or Sunday in lieu of the Friday morning ride. Indeed, members are encouraged to do so. Starting with the Victoria Day weekend, “Friday”rides will occur on Thursdays on long weekends.
Paul will look after Tuesday rides until Sue takes over in August.
There is now a deadline for posting a ride after which the ride coordinator will assume the ride is un-hosted and set the start of the ride to either the Port Hope Town Hall or Cobourg Community Centre default location. This should make it easier for you to plan your attendance in advance rather than last minute. It also means we are inviting you to please plan a ride soon. It would be great if every member planned or hosted at least one ride this season.
Tuesday rides will default to “unhosted – default to Port Hope or Cobourg start” after Sunday 9 PM.
Friday rides will default to “unhosted – default to Port Hope or Cobourg start” after Wednesday 9 PM.
We have become an all-year club that will include mountain biking, hiking and skiing.
This summer, we may plan some summer mountain bike events in conjunction with Bikes and Beers when they come to ride in Durham forest out of the Trailhub at the old Skyloft. This is great beginner friendly and non-technical riding.
Look for some of these activities in the calendar on the website and in Facebook.
We encourage you all to plan some extra events.
We are revamping the home page of our website to make it more user friendly for members and also more inviting to prospective new members. We’ll aim to reveal the new page by the first ride. It is a work-in-progress and we will be welcoming your comments and suggestions.
Our ride calendar shall continue to be on the website – see second tab in menu “2023 Calendar”. It is your first source for ride locations and times. Many communications, especially last-minute cancellations or notices shall be through Facebook. So check both sources often.
Right now, blog posts are still on the home page, however they will move as illustrated in the visual below to a tab called “Blog” on the menu. Note as well that if you’re quickly trying to get to the Facebook Group, you can navigate via the “f” in the top left corner of the menu, below the search bar.
A final note about our website, thanks to Miche and his band of merry GPS route creators, we are in the process of adding GPS rides to the Local Cycling Routes page so you will have access to paper maps and GPS routes.
There are only three pages for which you need the password.
- Member directory
- Emergency contacts
- AGM minutes
We will announce the new password at the kick-off ride and follow up with an email and date on which we will switch over to it.
Please verify that your information in the member list is correct and your emergency contact is correct.
Send any corrections to firstname.lastname@example.org which goes to Ruth, our Web Administrator. Please use this club email address instead of her other email addresses which you might have for her – she visits Yahoo very infrequently; she no longer works at UTSC and her personal Gmail account is the subject of many lost emails because it requires an easily over-look able double “l”.
We are focusing this year on welcoming new members. We have business cards and flyers to distribute and ask that you help to distribute these wherever you go. Please pick some up from Michel next time you’re at a ride.
We invite all members to be Ambassadors for the club. For example, when you go to a bike store, can you:
- Engage the personnel there about the Ganaraska Freewheelers?
- Talk up the club so they know it is a great club and recommend us?
- Notice if our cards and flyers are available and visible? If not, ask if they might be interested in giving us a little profile boost?
The Freewheelers have some traditional rides that we look forward to and hopefully will be well attended.
Wayne and Brenda’s season opener starting at 10:00 AM: It’s always a perennial favorite to meet and socialize with our friends.
Marshall’s lilac ride: Marshall always has a great route planned to take in the blossoms.
New memorial ride: This year Michel will host a ride on Sunday, July 23 from the Millbrook market as he used to do with Melanie. We will honour those Freewheelers that now have the wind always at their back.
Veggie race ride: Barb and John will host this fun event.
Thanksgiving ride: Since Catherine has moved away, we need someone else to take on this year’s Thanksgiving ride. This will hopefully be another grand potluck.
Season closer AGM: Our season closing ride will move from Halloween to be in conjunction with the AGM.
As you know from a previous post by Sue the organizer, this year we will have a four-day ride from Merrickville from Aug 14th to 17th.
Please let Sue know through your comments your level of interest and accommodation preferences. As updated recently on her post, Dianne, Sue, Pete and Ruth have secured sites 27-29. The campground is holding five more sites until April 10 for GFW members, so use the contact details provided in this post to claim your site.
Safety in 2023
We don’t want to be a club of rules, but we are guilty of a few faux pas, or in cycling lingo, a missed cadence or two.
When climbing a hill please move over or be ready to quickly get to the side. Often, we are making it difficult for cars to get by us. This has been a continual observation from our tailenders, that we block hills. We have to be more safety conscious when climbing. Please pay attention to the “car back” calls when climbing hills. Any suggestions to cure this bad habit – like nominating a literal whistle blower on each ride?
If you have covid or any cold or flu, please stay home and send your regrets. It is up to you if you wish to wear a mask or not.
This year under Jennifer B.’s leadership, we have arranged for new jerseys of a different colour for those who are orange/yellow adverse. These new jerseys are of a higher quality than the former jerseys so better for the summer heat.
There will be a sizing kit at our first ride. So far, 23 members have ordered a new jersey and hopefully by now have transferred to Lilianne their $126 payment. It’s not too late – you can still participate by forwarding your payment to Liliane or making your payment at the first ride when folks will try on jerseys and confirm their sizes.
You should have received from the email@example.com email two emails depicting the jerseys – if you can’t find them, please contact Ruth or Jennifer B.
Your Execs and Ride Coordinators feel honoured to serve this club with such great members.
Thank you for your enthusiasm, energy and efforts in making us a club of Great Fitness, Great Food, Great Friends.
Let’s have another wonderful season.
May the wind be often at your back. 😊
Very well said, Ruth. Im looking forward to the cycling season of 2023.
Thanks to Miche – he wrote it, I just made it pretty!