New York’s Biggest Cycling Event of the Year
This year’s New York Five Boro Tour takes place on Sunday, May 3rd and will host more than 32,000 riders. The Big Weekend Adventures group will include up to 30 riders who have RSVP’d through our Facebook and Meetup.com event pages. This will be our groups fifth group FBT ride. This will be our biggest group so far. If you’re one of our 31 riders, thanks for joining our group. This page will tell you everything you need to know about meeting up with our group for the ride, including the special route we’ll take to help prevent the walking that often takes place at the official start of the ride. If you have questions or need clarification, click on the envelope icon to send me a note. I’ll try to respond within 24 hours if I can. You can also post your comments or questions at the Facebook or Meetup.com event pages.
You must register on your own and have a paid entry pass to participate ($92). Registration opens at noon on Tuesday, January 20th. Visit the Bike New York registration page for more details. If you didn’t register in time, there are two alternatives that remain available from Bike New York. You can register as a V.I.P. at a cost of about $325. You can also register to raise funds for one of several dozen charity sponsors. Those groups provide tour entry at a much lower cost.
Our Own Special Route
For the past five years, our BWA group has taken a different route for the beginning of the tour. If you ridden the tour before you’ll remember that the first few miles can be a very slow go. Often, riders get stuck walking their bikes or standing still for more than an hour as the ride moves past the starting
line and through mid-town Manhattan. To avoid this traffic jam, we ride north on the Hudson Waterfront Greenway bike path, to 59th street. We then cut east and connect with the tour as it enters Central park. Because this is a tour, and not a race, the tour organizers do not have any problem letting riders with vests enter the ride throughout the ride. Each year we’ve taken this route, we enter the route at Central Park welcomed by the tour volunteers. The map shown here shows our special route with the green arrow. The orange highlighted route shows the area where traffic lights and bottlenecks slow riders down for several miles in lower and mid Manhattan. Click on the map to download a full route PDF of this year’s tour. If you’re into tracking all the details, and getting credit for the burned calories, you can view our course on a MapMyRide Route Map.
Meeting Up with Our Group
Members of our BWA group will be coming from all parts of the New York area, and some from as far as Canada. We’ll have three specific meetup points and times. You can join us at whichever point is best for you. But please be prompt. We’r a large group and we want to keep everyone moving through the ride on schedule. Here are the three meetup locations and times:
Cahoot’s is closed on Sundays and they’ve given us permission to use their parking lot (across the street from the pub) for parking and carpool organization. If you’re coming from Central New Jersey, I suggest you join our group there and either carpool or caravan with us as we move to the second meetup point on Staten Island. We will leave this point by 5:45 at the latest. Click here for a Google Map.
If you’re coming by car, but not from Central New Jersey, the South Beach Parking Area is a great place to park for the day… for free. This location is less than one mile from the party at the end of the tour and will give us a great start with a three-mile warm-up ride to the ferry. We will leave the South Beach Parking Area at 6:45 promptly in order to catch the 7:30 ferry to Manhattan. Click here for a Google Map.
If you’re coming by mass transit, or riding from a Manhattan, Queens, Bronx, or Brooklyn location, then meet us at the Staten Island Ferry Terminal near Battery Park in Manhattan. In front of the terminal, at the corner of Whitehall and South Streets, is Peter Minuit Plaza. That’s where you’ll find the giant “Staten Island Ferry” metal and blue neon sign pictured here.
Meet us at this location around 8:15 am so you’ll find us as soon as we get off the ferry from Staten Island. Click here for a Google Map that will show you exactly where to meet up with our group.
If all works well, we’ll be on our way at about 8:30 am. If our group misses the 7:30 ferry, we’ll be delayed by 30 minutes.
Finding Each Other Throughout the Ride
With 31 riders in our group, it will be difficult to stay together for the entire ride. Typically, riders stick together in groups of two to four other riders who ride at a similar pace. In fact, having our entire group stick together for the whole 4-hour ride can be pretty frustrating for everyone and will create a lot of waiting and catching up.
I’ll try to keep our starting group together for the first five miles, from Battery Park to the entrance to Central Park, to make sure everyone finds their way through the BWA special starting route. That will give everyone about 45 minutes to find other riders with similar riding patterns that they can ride and share energy with throughout the ride. Once we reach Central Park, you and your small group are on your own.
Often, group members will find a chance to catch up and reconnect at one of the four rest areas along the route, or at the festival at Fort Wadsworth at the end of the ride. Share phone numbers, trade texts, use your technology, and you’ll find it easy to reconnect through the ride.
My Contact Information
You can contact me directly by e-mail with any questions you have. My address is firstname.lastname@example.org. On the day of the ride you should contact me by text message at (732) 236-1837.
If you’ve registered for the ride on the Big Weekend Adventures Facebook or Meetup.com pages, please send me an e-mail to confirm that you will be riding with our group. Include your cell phone number so I can reach you the morning and day of the event.
Decorate Your Helmet
One way to make it easier for friends to find you on the ride is decorate your helmet. No, really, lots of groups will have some very creative ideas for showing solidarity by decorating their helmets. If you’re so inclined, my recommendation would be to decorate your helmet with our team colors… bright blue and neon green. I’ll be buying the two feather boas shown here and cutting them down to create a bright blue and green feather tail for my helmet. Click on the pictures to find the online supplier I found if you’d like to decorate your helmet the same way.
If boas aren’t your thing, feel free to come up with a different creative solution. But if possible, use the blue and green of Big Weekend Adventures so you’ll be easy to spot as part of our group. Some groups decorate their helmets with large pipe cleaners. Others have used balloons. This is your chance to be creative… have fun.
We’ll begin running weekend warm-up rides as soon as most of the snow clears out of our area. Watch this site and our Facebook or Meetup.com pages to be aware of rides as they’re announced and join us when you can.
Be sure to review our Terms of Participation before signing up.