Happy New Year!
After a long COVID-induced hiatus, welcome back to the new Charlottesville Bicycle Club. We’re excited about the changes to the club and the benefits it will bring to the cycling community. I’d like to tell you a bit about what’s behind the transition and what it means for our members.
For more than 30 years, CBC has served the greater Charlottesville cycling world through its informative website and regularly scheduled road (and occasional gravel) group rides. CBC operated as a loosely-organized, informal group of friends, led most recently by long-time member Bill Lowe. Then we all went into the pandemic break from life as we knew it. Scheduled rides were put on hold. Time passed. Lots of it.
But this pause gave us an opportunity to re-imagine what the club could be. We set out three main goals to return to action: (1) maintain much of the existing publicly-available web content, which contains multiple route suggestions and valuable insights into riding in our area, for the benefit of all interested local and visiting cyclists; (2) adopt best practices for a cycling club; and (3) create new features and benefits for the interests of members. For the club and its membership, the main changes are:
CBC is now incorporated. CBC has been formally organized as a tax-exempt, member-supported, 501(c)7 corporation. The club is providing insurance (effective Feb. 1, 2022), implementing waivers and emergency contact lists, and taking other steps consistent with robust, modern cycling clubs. The goal is to protect the club and its members, and provide you with the best ride experience possible, all while minimizing bureaucracy. Ongoing club activities will be supported by member dues ($30 for individuals).
Weekly road rides are back! The schedule has returned, starting with the traditional Saturday morning rides. Additional rides are being planned for the near future, so stay tuned! Also, we are actively looking for new routes, rides, and groups to add to the schedule, so contact us with your ideas for new CBC activities.
A new dynamic website. We’ve launched a new website with great growth potential. Route suggestions, safety information, and other material from the old site has moved over and remains available to all viewers. New features have been added including membership sign-up pages and fresh content. A community forum is open for cycling-oriented discussion.
Member benefits. All benefits are listed here, but a few stand out. For the first time in club history, members will have liability and excess medical insurance on CBC-sanctioned rides (effective Feb. 1 2022) provided through the club’s participation in The League of American Bicyclists. Second, we’re excited to provide an all-new Ride With GPS Club Account, which will provide subscribing members with premium navigation features and access to a growing ride library. Also, to promote safety, we’ve arranged for those signing up for memberships to receive a 20% discount from Road ID (valid through Road ID’s promotional period Jan. 1-21, 2022).
Expanded reach. Our goal is not just to help organize incredibly scenic Saturday road rides for fun, friendly people who look after each other, but to become the go-to resource that unites all cyclists in the greater Charlottesville area. We aspire to support riders and groups of different interests, speeds, and abilities. We want to create a vibrant communications forum for the incredible cycling community here. But we need your help. We’d love to hear from like-minded cyclists who share our vision.
Next steps for members. We hope you become a subscribing member by joining here. If you are not yet ready to join but want to receive periodic notices from CBC, you can add your name to a new general email distribution list here. Note that we are using this occasion to make a fresh start with the membership list. All prior CBC email distribution lists will be retired in the near future after we fully transition to the new sign-up system.
In addition to yours truly, the inaugural class of directors consists of Connie Hendy (Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary), Bob Mical (Chief Technology Officer and Webmaster Extraordinaire), Peter Aaron, and Bill Lowe. Special thanks go to Bob for building a beautiful, feature-rich, interactive website from scratch. The club also extends a huge thank you to Connie, who in addition to wearing multiple hats for the new club, has created an amazing resource for members on the Ride With GPS Club Account, with a big assist from Peter. This relaunch would not have been possible without their remarkable efforts.
Finally, for many years, one person effectively carried this organization. He supported the original website, curated its content, created route maps and descriptions, and scheduled the rides. He has been an army of one, and we have all been the beneficiaries of his efforts. On behalf of its past, present – and now future! – members, CBC expresses its sincere gratitude to Bill Lowe for his years of dedicated service to the club and the entire Charlottesville cycling community.
We’re stoked about the new CBC, but we’re a work in progress. Tell us what you think about the club’s changes. Check out the website, and let us know what could be added or where the kinks are. Leave a comment below, or contact us via email.
We look forward to you joining us. Now, let’s go ride.
Wonderful! I will be joining in membership and rides soon. We just moved into our new home,!
Welcome to the neighborhood! Hope the unpacking goes quickly, and look forward to you joining us!