Great American Bike Rally scheduled for Saturday in Hamilton
Cyclists can ride 1 to 20 miles, or more adventurous cyclists can take on the long “countryside” ride – over 35 miles – following the river to Okeana and back. Fruit, beverages and snacks are provided by the rally organizers after the ride at $15 for ages 12 and under and $35 for ages 12+ and adults.
Bruewer said he wanted to increase attendance for this year’s event. It took a hit in the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it’s on the rise. The organizers want to see more than they got in the first year, which was 70.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, when ridership was expected to be down and donations were expected to be hit, Bruewer added a route from Butler County to Cleveland along the trails, allowing the rally to reach its first-year fundraising goal. In year four, they hope to continue the trend of donating at least $10,000 collectively to their charitable partners.
Although they have a minimum goal, the organization’s goal for 2022 is to raise $25,000 through sponsorships and rider support, as all proceeds support charitable causes.
“We raised $10,000 every year and donated $10,000 every year to charities,” Bruewer said. “This year will be no different, hopefully it will be a bit more than that.”
The rally will begin before the start of the annual Operation Pumpkin event, which was designed and coordinated with the annual downtown festival. There will be a bike corral for cyclists when they return from the trails, where they can park their bikes and enjoy Day 2 of Operation Pumpkin, which runs from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday. Day 1 of Operation Pumpkin, which takes place today, also runs from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Day 3 runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
“We thought it was a great idea, we reached out to the committee, we’re both aligned with the committee, we agree it’s a good thing,” Bruewer said. “You can go out, take a bike ride, bring your kids and park your bike to ride around downtown.”
Operation Pumpkin co-chairman Jason Snyder said that for any other event taking place on the same weekend, “the more the better”.
“We have the same opinion on the Pumpkin Fall Crawl that businesses on the west side of Hamilton have organized,” he said. “The more people downtown, the better.”
HOW TO REGISTER
The 4th annual Great American Bike Rally is scheduled for Saturday and will take place before the Operation Pumpkin festivities.
Visit greatamericanbikerally.com to register, or register the same day at the Casual Pint Patio, 130 Riverfront Plaza, downtown Hamilton.
The cost is $15 for passengers 12 and under, $35 for 12 and over and adults.