Bike-A-Thon FAQ

Getting ready to ride

How do I register and form or join a team?

Call your friends, family, co-workers, and comrades and form a Bike-A-Thon team!  As a team you are eligible for special team prizes, and many teams choose to show their pride by decorating their bikes and outfits!

To join an existing team...

  1. Search for the team during registration and join it.
  2. Already registered?  You can still join a team. Just log in and click on join a team.
  3. Please note, unless you registered together originally, you should still direct sponsors to your personal fundraising page url. Your total will count towards the team total for team prizes. You still need to meet your individual fundraising minimum to ride.

If you would like to fundraise collectively as a team, then you must register at the same time or ask others to join your team before fundraising together on your team page.  

  1. Gather the names, emails, phone numbers and emergency contact information of all who you would like to collectively fundraise with.
  2. Register yourself online (you will be team captain) and create a team name. Once you are registered, you can register additional participants who will automatically be added to your team during the registration process. Make sure to give sponsors the url for the team fundraising page and to edit your team goal to reflect at least the fundraising minimum for each participant. For example, if you are registering yourself, another adult, a child under 12, and a youth aged 12-17, the team goal minimum is $200+$200+$50+$100 for a total of $550 fundraising minimum for everyone to be able to ride the Bike-A-Thon. Sponsors will be able to search for your team name, and if they search for your name and donate to you personally, don't worry--this will still show up on your team fundraising thermometer.
  3. Please note, children under age 12 need to be registered individually, must raise $50 to participate, and must ride with a parent or guardian aged 18+ who must fundraise for them as a team or on the parent or guardian page, which means the minimum fundraising goal for a parent and child under 12 is $250. Youth ages 12-17 can fundraise on their own pages to meet their $100 minimum, and if they are 15-17 and want to ride without a parent or guardian, they must bring a signed waiver to participate.
  4. If you have not started fundraising and want to create a team with others who have not started fundraising, you can all register yourselves and join the team and start fundraising together collectively.

If you have not registered together and you wish to fundraise together, you may contact Jennifer Licht at jennifer@bikesnotbombs.org or at 617-522-0222 x104 to request an exception. 

What are the perks of riding the Bike-A-Thon?

Each registered rider who achieves their minimum fundraising goal receives the following on the day of the Bike-A-Thon: a special 2019 Bike-A-thon t-shirt, reusable water bottle, reflective sticker, rider band, breakfast, snacks and lunch, and a fully marked and supported ride!  The registration fee helps cover the costs of each rider, ensuring that any fundraising you do goes straight to our programs.

Our top fundraising riders and teams also get a prize!  Check out our list of prizes and raffle items which will continue to be updated up until the event!

 

Are there other ways I can help Bikes Not Bombs and the Bike-A-Thon?

Thanks for asking!

We always need help getting the word out about the ride.  So tell your friends!

  • RSVP to our Facebook event and invite all your friends
  • Tweet, post or instagram about the ride and organization using the hashtag #BAT2019
  • Share BNB's posts and tweets
  • Request posters or leaflets from Jennifer Licht to post around your neighborhood or workplace

Create a team!

  • Gather your friends, family and co-workers and encourage them to ride with you!  

Volunteer!

  • The Bike-A-Thon comes together with the help of many dedicated volunteers.  Even if you are riding you can still help out before or after the ride (or even during!).  Register as a volunteer and you'll be contacted shortly by a staff member, or email Angela Phinney directly.

Am I ready for the ride?

Some people wonder, "will I be able to do the ride?" The answer is usually, "yes", but you may need to do some training. Below are suggestions that can be helpful in determining which ride will be within your reach. Your supporters might even sponsor you with more money if they see that you're pushing yourself! 

For the 10 mile ride

  • Departure is 11:30 am.
  • Riders should be able to maintain an average speed of at least 5 mph for the whole ride, and stop for no longer than 45 minutes at the rest stop. This would put you at the finish line by 2:15 pm. 

For the 30 mile ride

  • Departure is 10:30 am.
  • Riders should be able to maintain an average speed of at least 8 mph for the whole ride, and stop for no longer than 1/2 hour at the rest stop. This would put you at the finish line by 3:00 pm.

For the 50 mile ride

  • Departure is 9:30 am.
  • Riders should be able to maintain an average speed of at least 9 mph for the whole ride, and stop for no longer than 1 hour total among both of the rest stops. This would put you at the finish line by 4:00 pm. 
  • Riders should have completed at least one ride of 30 miles or more within the last month.
  • At mile 14, riders will have the option of turning off to ride the 30 mile route instead of the 50, if they so desire. 
  • At mile 28, riders can take a shortcut that will cut off 8 miles.  All riders who have not passed this point by 3:20pm will be diverted to the short cut to ensure that they return to the After-Party in time for food.

For the 100 mile ride

  • There will be 2 short cuts added on the 100 mile ride this year: 65 & 80 miles.
  • Departure is between 6:45 - 8:00 am, depending on whether you plan to ride the short cut routes from the beginning.
  • Riders should be able to maintain an average speed of at least 12 mph for the whole ride, and stop for no longer than 1 hour total among all of the 4 rest stops. This would put you at the finish line between 3-4:30pm.
  • Riders should have completed at least one ride of 75 miles or more within the last month.
  • At mile 33 riders can take a shortcut that will divert to a 65 mile route.  All riders who have not passed this point by 11am will be diverted to the short cut to ensure that they return to the After-Party in time for food.
  • At mile 60 riders can take a shortcut that will cut off 9 miles. This is just after the last rest stop. All riders who have not passed this point by 1:30pm will be diverted to the short cut to ensure that they return to the After-Party in time for food.

If you are interested in training rides to get in shape, we recommend you check out some of the following organized group rides.

Accessible to All

Easy-Moderate

Moderate-Challenging

Challenging

Is my bike ready for the ride?

Making sure that your bike is up to snuff and ready for the ride is a key component to having an enjoyable, worry-free day. Though we will have skilled mechanics on-hand to do a last-minute safety check and along the ride to handle any minor problems that pop up (as well as support vehicles for major breakdowns), there is no substitute for preventative maintenance! Please note that the mechanics will not be able to handle any major repairs the day of the Bike-A-Thon. To help make sure that all of our riders are safe, riders who show up with unsafe bicycles on the day off will be asked not to ride.

If you haven't had a tune up or had your bike looked over by a professional mechanic within the last year, we highly recommend taking it to the Bikes Not Bombs Bike Shop or your local bike shop of choice. 

As a thank you for registering for the BAT, all registered riders who bring their bike into the Bike Shop before June 1st will get a 10% discount on any parts and components involved in repairs. This discount does not apply to any labor or accessories involved.  Please keep in mind that many shops may have a week or more wait time on repairs. 

Rider Fundraising

Making and editing your personal fundraising page

If you haven't already done so, create your personal fundraising page so that people can sponsor your ride online!  Remember that if you are fundraising collectively then the person who registered the group should make the team page which you will all use. If you have already registered, you should have received a link in an email to get started on making your fundraising page. You can also just log in and get started right away.  Comprehensive step by step instructions on how to create and manage your fundraising page can be found here.

Some tips for designing your page

  • Write some text on your page that is about you personally so that people will feel connected to your ride.
  • Add a picture of yourself. You can drag and drop photos right into the editing box. You can even create a slide show.

Getting more help

If you have more questions, please contact Jennifer Licht at jennifer@bikesnotbombs.org or at 617-522-0222 x104.

How can I meet my fundraising minimum?

Most of our riders are able to easily meet their fundraising minimum ($200 for adults 18 and older, $100 for youth ages 12-17, $50 for youth under 12), try these tips!
  • Create your personal fundraising page online so people can easily sponsor your ride.
  • Send an email to all your friends and family asking them to sponsor you. Just go to your fundraising dashboard or my fundraising tools and select share event. You can create a list of people to email. In the email, you will include a link to your fundraising page. Refer to the Participant Guide for detailed instructions, including sharing your event via social media.
  • Add a snippet of text to your email signature announcing your Bike-A-Thon ride and providing a link to your personal fundraising page.
  • Check to see if your employer will match tax-deductible donations that you make. If so, let us know and we will follow up with them to make your self-sponsorships go even further!
  • Keep your paper pledge sheet in your wallet at all times so that you can receive checks and cash from people who might want to sponsor you after hearing about your ride.
  • Post regular status updates about your Bike-A-Thon ride to your Facebook or other social networking site using #BAT2019.
  • Go knock on your neighbors' doors and show your excitement for Bikes Not Bombs and your Bike-A-Thon ride!

How to see who has sponsored your ride

Log into your account. In your fundraising dashboard, simply click on my donations. There will be a running list of everyone who has made a donation even if they have chosen to be anonymous on your fundraising page.

Getting more help

If you have more questions, please contact Jennifer Licht at jennifer@bikesnotbombs.org or at 617-522-0222 x104.

Can I collect checks and cash sponsorships?

Definitely! All checks should be made out to "Bikes Not Bombs." Please write BAT2019 and your name in the check memo so we can make sure it is credited to your ride. You can and should record all cash and checks yourself on your fundraising dashboard in My Donations so that they are counted towards your fundraising total as soon as possible. If you have a cash or check donation to add, click the + Add Cash or Check button and enter the information for your donor.

You have two options for getting the checks and cash to us:

  1. Turn them in early
    1. Mail or hand-deliver the checks/cash to the BNB Hub at 284 Amory Street.
    2. Make sure to indicate that the money is to sponsor your Bike-A-Thon ride.
    3. Please indicate whether you have already entered the checks and cash yourself on your fundraising page. If not, these sponsorships should show up on your personal fundraising page thermometer within 1 week of us receiving them.
    4. All checks/cash received by 5 pm on the Friday before Bike-A-Thon will be credited to your ride if you have not already done so.
  2. OR: bring them with you on Bike-A-Thon morning (most common)
    1. Make sure to arrive at least 1/2 hour before your ride departure so that you'll have time to check in and hand in the money.
    2. In advance, please print out a paper pledge sheet. Then fill it out listing all the checks and cash that you're turning in on Bike-A-Thon day and indicate whether you have already entered them on your online fundraising page yourself.
    3. After Bike-A-Thon, these sponsorships will show up on your personal fundraising page thermometer if you have not already entered them yourself.

Ride day!

Route maps & marking

All of the Bike-A-Thon routes will be clearly marked on the road in the pattern displayed below.  If different routes coincide, the mileage will be added.  Route markings will be reviewed by volunteers prior to ride departure.

 

Additionally printed paper maps will be available to every rider the day of the ride. GPX routes will be available a few weeks before the ride day for download and use with a GPS. Want to access the route on your cell phone?  All routes (and tracking!) are available.  

Route rules

All riders must follow our route rules.  By signing the ride waiver you are agreeing to abide by the following: 

  • All riders must wear a helmet at all times while biking
  • No riding with headphones
  • Riders under age 15 must ride with a guardian
  • Riders should obey all traffic laws: stop at red lights, yield to pedestrians, use hand signals and ride single file in traffic
  • Ride predictibly, no stunts
  • Keep a bike's length between yourself and other riders; no drafting or pacelining.

Riders Aged 15-17 

If you will be 15-17 on Bike-A-Thon day, and won't be coming with a parent or legal guardian, then your parent will have needed to sign the ewaiver during registration. 

Switching Routes

Decided that you'd rather ride a different route than your registered for?  No problem!

To switch before you start the ride:

  1. Look up (click on "What should I do on ride day?" below) when your desired ride departs
  2. On ride day, arrive at the Stony Brook Park with enough time to check in, grab some breakfast and have your bike looked over by our shop mechanics (if wanted), before the ride departure.

To switch during the ride:

Our routes are one continuous loop, and riders are welcome to switch to a shorter route while they are riding for any reason. Cutoffs will be clearly marked. Additionally, riders on the 50 and 100 mile routes have a few optional shortcuts. Marshalls will be diverting riders to these routes at certain times to ensure all riders are back in time for lunch.

  1. At mile 33 riders can take a shortcut that will divert to a 65 mile route.  All riders who have not passed this point by 11am will be diverted to the short cut.
  2. At mile 60 riders can take a shortcut that will cut off 9 miles.  All riders who have not passed this point by 1:30pm will be diverted to the short cut.

What should I do on ride day?

How do I get there?

All of the Bike-A-Thon routes will be leaving from 100 Boylston St. in Jamaica Plain, right by the Stony Brook T on the Orange Line.  You can take the Orange Line to the start, ride your bike, get a ride, or drive your own car.  Car parking is limited car but please see our parking map (PDF) for recommended nearby streets. Always make sure to check signage! 

When should I show up?

Arrive at the field near the Stony Brook T-Stop (Orange Line) with enough time to check in, grab a snack, and have our mechanics safety-check your bike (if you like) before your ride departs!

Route Check In
Begins
Ride
Departs
100 Mile 6:30 AM 6:45 - 7:15 AM (rolling)
50 Mile 8:30 AM 9:30 AM
30 Mile 9:30 AM 10:30 AM
10 Mile 10:30 AM 11:30 AM

What should I bring?

  • If you collected any sponsorships in the form of check, cash, or pay later, please bring your pledge sheet(s) and checks/cash with you to morning check in.
  • Bring your helmet. All riders are required to wear a helmet.
  • We will have extra water bottles on hand, but please bring your own water bottle if you can.
  • Please bring any needed inhalers, EpiPens or medication that you might need and keep it with you at all times during the ride.

Food to expect

At Bikes Not Bombs we do our best to take care of our riders and volunteers, and at the Bike-A-Thon we'll have food and drinks on-hand to help make sure people are fueled throughout the day! The following is an overview of the menu, though it is subject to change:

Morning check-in and set up

  • Coffee
  • Bread
  • Jam
  • Peanut Butter
  • Cheese
  • Energy bars
  • Fruit
  • Water

Rest stops along the ride

  • Fruit
  • Bread
  • Peanut Butter
  • Jam
  • Energy bars
  • Sports energy drink
  • Water

Lunch at the rider after-party

  • Hearty vegetable and pasta salads
  • Filling rice and bean bowls
  • Energizing drinks
  • Water

Important

Riders and volunteers with gluten, nut and other food allergies may want to bring some extra fuel for the day that suits their specific dietary needs. The same goes for those with food preferences, though some solid vegan and vegetarian options will be available.

 

Have more questions? Contact us!