Dear friends of the Green Bay Bicycle Collective,
The new year is here, and we appreciate your support through yet another year! 2021 marked year 10 for the Collective, and it was a big year as we worked on bouncing back from the pandemic. At the beginning of the year, we aimed to organize a few rides, continue our educational efforts, and host the annual bike banquet once our community could be vaccinated. We also hoped to secure funding for our Earn-a-Bike program, a new storage facility, and educational programs. Thanks to you, our community, GBBC members, sponsors, and donors, we were able to reach and exceed those goals.
Here’s a recap of our 2021 happenings and what you can expect for 2022!
Our Biggest Milestone: Year 10 Bike Banquet!
Every spring, we kick off the year with a Bike Banquet, a fundraiser and membership drive that includes live music, food, drinks, raffles, and fun games and prizes. In 2020, we had to cancel the Bike Banquet due to the pandemic. This year, still on the heels of COVID-19, we postponed the banquet to allow attendees to get vaccinated. Once we (finally!) held it right here at the community shop, the banquet was a great success. It was complete with beverages from Hinterland Brewery, raffles, games, bouncy houses, Lil Jamaica food truck, and live music (check out the news coverage by WBAY!).
The Bike Banquet raised over $8,000 that we can now use to grow our Earn-a-Bike program, maintain our educational and advocacy efforts, and support our operations. Thank you to all who attended, donated, or spread the word, and thank you to our wonderful sponsors (see below) for helping make this all possible!
Keep an eye out for our 2022 Bike Banquet date! We anticipate holding it again in April to kick off spring.
Another Exciting Achievement: Crime Prevention Grant
A central part of our mission is education, and one of the ways we carry out that mission is through our Earn-a-Bike program. As part of the Earn-a-Bike program, children and teens learn bike safety and maintenance, working at the community bike shop to earn a refurbished bike. This program helps reduce crimes like bike thefts in the area—a growing problem in Green Bay, particularly since the pandemic.
In August, we were awarded a Crime Prevention Grant through the Greater Green Bay Community Foundation of $3500 to expand our Earn-a-Bike program. We are excited to grow the program and increase access to reliable, affordable transportation (and a fun activity!) in the Green Bay area! Thank you to the Crime Prevention Foundation and the Greater Green Bay Community Foundation for facilitating this growth.
Rides in Review: Pride Ride and Fat Bike Tour
We supported two main community rides last summer, the Pride Ride and Fat Bike Tour. In support of Napalese Lounge and Grille and the LGBTQ+ community in Green Bay, we held a guided night ride from Johannes Park to Napalese. There, we kicked off Pride Weekend and celebrated Napalese’s reopening of their front door, which had been sealed since 2000 due to vandalism and crimes against the LGBTQ+ community. We also witnessed the unveiling of a mural by Oshkosh artist Loschue (Chue) Lo.
The Fat Tire Tour of Green Bay is an annual, casually-paced ride organized by Fat Tire Tour. Covering 15-20 miles over a 6-7 hour period, cyclists stop at several local establishments and participate in costume contests, games, and themes. Our members assisted in the logistics and organization of the ride, and many of us joined it! This year was themed Catzz vs. Dawgs. Past years have included Zombies vs. Humans, Hippies vs. Gangstas, and other fun face-offs.
So, what’s in store for next year?!
The GBBC is gearing up for an even busier year in 2022, and we’re excited to share our efforts! In the new year, we’re hoping to make bike safety courses free to the public, offer mobile bike repair, expand our Earn-a-Bike program, bring back the Bike Bash, and maybe even find a new home in a larger facility.
To get there, we’re teaming up with Wisconsin Bike Fed, a state-wide organization dedicated to making bicycling better for all riders. By partnering with Wisconsin Bike Fed, we’re looking to expand Green Bay’s cycling infrastructure, bike safety education, and basic bike maintenance skills. We hope to create a mobile bike repair unit to help Green Bay residents fix their bikes when they’re out on rides. The mobile bike repair unit would also help us reach more local youth and teach them about bike repair and maintenance.
In addition to our partnership with Wisconsin Bike Fed, we’ll continue fundraising for our Earn-a-Bike program and a new facility through events, grants, the Bike Banquet, and the Bike Bash. We’ve outgrown our current location—which is hard to believe!—and are looking to expand our hours, pay staff, and offer more bikes. So, keep an eye out for announcements and fun events in the new year, as there will be many!
How to Support the Green Bay Bicycle Collective in 2022
If you want to help make cycling more accessible in the Greater Green Bay Area and support our community, there are several ways to do so. If you haven’t already, you can join the Green Bay Bicycle Collective with a small donation or volunteer your time at events or the community bike shop (418 4th St). Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram and stay tuned for the latest events and happenings at the Collective.
Thanks for all of your support over the last year (and ten!). We’re excited to see what 2022 brings!
–Your friends at GBBC