June 2011 President’s Letter

Report from Bike Camp 2011

As I write this, on May 14, 2011, I just returned from the first Saturday session of KBC's Bike Camp 2011 at the Portage YMCA. From a bike riding perspective it wouldn't have been considered the best of days. After a hard downpour last night, the rain continued on and off throughout the morning. Every one of our Bike Campers and all our volunteers got wet to at least some degree.

You know what though? It didn't matter.

As we've done in the past at the Tuesday evening orientation meeting, we divided the 31 Campers who signed up this year into three groups. We asked the groups to arrive at half hour intervals in order to not overwhelm our crew of bike mechanics and fitters who, on the first Saturday of Bike Camp, make adjustments to the Campers' bikes.

After being bike fit, Bike Camp Committee volunteers went over the nuances of proper helmet fitting and then put the riders through a bike handling skills course in the parking lot. After each group completed those drills they went out for a ride. And the rains came...

But you should have seen the beaming faces of each and every one of those riders as they arrived back at the parking lot! Bedraggled from the rain, hair hanging in strands on their cheeks, shins splattered with mud and road dirt – and rosy-cheeked and smiling.

I'll tell you true: Bike Camp is the most soul-satisfying activity in which I've ever been involved. Being able to pass on your enthusiasm and passion for something you love is about as good as it gets. And we've got an unusually cheery and good-natured crew this year – volunteers and Campers alike – which makes the entire experience even more enjoyable. It was wonderful to hear the post-ride laughter and excited chatter this morning as everyone dug into grapes, bananas, trail mix, and energy bars in the shelter of the YMCA auxiliary building.

I am grateful and humbled to be among the group who has put on Bike Camp these past six years. It is a major commitment to be sure, for every one of us. The Bike Camp Committee of Renee Mitchell, Chair; Paul Bruneau; David Jones; Ed Micalizzi; and Peggy Marcelletti put in a lot of hours not only planning Bike Camp but also administering it. But we find it well worth the effort.

I'd also like to publicly thank our intrepid cadre of bike fitters this year: KBC Vice President Doug Kirk; Richard Neumann from Breakaway Bicycles: Tim Krone from the new Pedal bicycle shop; Jon Ballema and Joe Yeager from the KBC/CMS Race Team; and Bob Lynch, recently returned from Germany. Their personal attention and one-on-one interaction are one of the highlights singled out each year by the Bike Campers in our exit surveys.

Bike Camp, of course, could not continue without countless other volunteers from the club at large. Some have helped us out faithfully for years. Others are former Bike Campers who now have the experience to be able to pass on some of their accumulated wisdom to those new to the sport. Though too numerous to mention individually, the club is in your debt.

As President of the Kalamazoo Bicycle Club I'm very proud to be associated with the unselfish and energetic people who so nobly work to fulfill the club's mission statement by putting on Bike Camp.

Grant Review Committee Hard at Work

KBC put out the call several months ago to solicit volunteers to staff a committee with a most important task: deciding where, how, and when to fund projects with the club's money. Rick Whaley, David Jones, Jeff Newman, Dale Krueger and Celine Keizer all stepped up to take on this important mission. Along with the Executive Board of Tom Keizer, Treasurer; Bill Figeley, Secretary; Doug Kirk, Vice President; and Zolton Cohen, President, they comprise the KBC Grant Review Committee.

The impetus behind forming this committee and process was the desire to be able to more fairly and deliberately assess funding requests, and also to be able to track the results of the grants.

The Grant Review Committee started off by developing grant application and follow-up forms that appear on the KBC website. Individuals or organizations wishing to pursue funding for their cycling-related projects can download the forms and submit them electronically for consideration.

After receipt of an application, the Grant Review Committee confers and debates via e-mail about whether a project is worthy of club funding. Applications submitted by the first of each month are decided on by the next monthly club meeting.

This is a new process for the Kalamazoo Bicycle Club. We're trying it in this form for a year to see how it works, but may revise the methodology after evaluating whether or not it succeeds as intended. Thus far it seems reasonably workable, and the committee's first action was to grant $400 to the new Lawton Priority Health Race for Wishes bike race, to be held on July 17.

Thanks to the Grant Review Committee members who have already given of their time to work though the process of putting this new protocol into place. And future thanks for their continued involvement as we move forward. . .

Zolton Cohen, KBC President


Monthly Meeting

The next KBC Monthly Meeting will take place at 7:00 P.M. on Tuesday, June 14, 2011 at the Kalamazoo YMCA on Maple Street. Steve Stepek, the Senior Transportation Planner for KATS, will provide a briefing about the Kalamazoo Area Transportation Study (KATS). All KBC members are welcome to attend.


KalTour – July 10, 2011

The KBC website and the brochures that have been mailed to all KBC members and past KalTour riders will tell you everything you need to know about signing up for and riding KalTour. What the brochure doesn't say is that putting on a ride like this requires people to do many different things before and during the ride. For instance the Kalamazoo Amateur Radio Club coordinates communications between SAG vehicles, SAG stops, and the ride headquarters. The Alive After Five AMBUCS chapter serves lunch at the Briar Patch SAG stop. Other volunteers register riders starting at 7:00 A.M. and arrive at 6:00 A.M. to set up the registration area.

I'm still looking for a few people to help out during the ride, particularly during the middle of the day. Tasks include working registration from 9:00 to 11:00 A.M., leading the 10:00 A.M. family ride, and serving watermelon at the end of the ride (starting at about noon). Please e-mail mkrisch@chartermi.net or call 323-2014 if you can help.

I hope to see you all on July 10th at our new starting location Bronson Athletic Club (look for the "Groves" sign on the stone wall just south of I-94 at 9th Street).

Mike Krisher, KalTour Co-Director


KalTour Road Painting, Tuesday June 28

We will meet at the same time and place as always – at 6:00 P.M. in front of the KVCC tennis courts. Wear old clothes. Spray paint and directions will be provided. In case of rain, please e-mail mkrisch@charermi.net or call 323-2014 for an alternate date or to arrange to paint on your own schedule. It is not necessary to call or e-mail ahead of time, but please do so if possible, especially if you will be joining us after the scheduled start time.

KalTour (and previously Flowerfest) has always been known for color-coded route markings before and after each turn; we also paint straight arrows at all major crossroads. Help us maintain this tradition!

Mike Krisher, KalTour Co-Director


CMS Racing Team

CMS Racing Team Report

CMS Racing has started off the season with some solid results. We’ve had top 10 finishes in at least one category in every race we’ve entered this season and have been on the podium in at least one category in every USAC sanctioned race.

We started off the season with the Barry Roubaix race, placing Jesse Riegle in 4th place. The USAC road season and Michigan Points Series kicked off at the Willow Time Trial where we had great success in every category, with Bob Lynch, Joe Yaeger, and John Wunderlin having top 10 finishes (5th, 9th, and 10th). Dylan Gonda rocked in the Juniors category for us and took a 3rd place spot on the podium. Dylan repeated that 3rd place performance the next day at the extremely difficult Cone Azalia road race, a sort of mini Paris Roubaix for Michigan, while the Cat 4 race was controlled by CMS racers Jesse Riegle and Jason Goodin on the way to 2nd and 8th place finishes. Justin Sprung continued the action with a win at Grattan a couple weeks later.

Most recently we were at Frankenmuth for Memorial Day weekend. Dylan Gonda again rocked the Juniors category en route to a 2nd place finish. Bill Figeley and John Wunderlin both had strong placings in 13th in their categories. Jeremy VanSpronsen did his first road race and learned a lot of key tactical information. Our Cat 4 contingent had a frustrating day there, with Justin Sprung placing 21st after getting slammed into the cones along the finish sprint. Jamie Clark, or El Jefe as we prefer to call him, rounded out Memorial Day weekend with a strong 3rd place podium finish at the inaugural Grand Rapids Time Trial.

To date we’re placed second in the team points series in Cat 4 but have not given up the fight for first quite yet. For us, the action continues at West Branch this weekend. You can follow us on Facebook at CMS Race Team and hear more about the action.

(Editor’s Note: CMS is the title sponsor of the KBC Racing Team.)

Jason Goodin

Summary of CMS Racing Team Results

CMS Racing Team Leading the Way at the Cat 4 Das Tour of Frankenmuth

CMS Racing Team Leading the Way at the Cat 4 Das Tour of Frankenmuth

Barry-Roubaix (March 26): Jesse Riegle 4th, Jon Ballema 14th, Men’s 30-34, 35 mile race.

Willow Time Trial (April 30): Dylan Gonda 3rd, Juniors 13-14. John Wunderlin 10th, Cat 3. Bob Lynch 5th, Joe Yaeger 9th, Cat 4. Jeremy VanSpronsen 42nd, Cat 5.

Cone Azalia (May 1): Dylan Gonda 3rd, Juniors 13-14. John Wunderlin 15th, Cat 3. Jesse Riegle 2nd, Jason Goodin 8th, Cat 4. Chris Barnes 13th, Masters 45-55.

Grattan “B” Race (May 18): Justin Sprung 1st, Jason Goodin 25th.

Das Tour of Frankenmuth (May 25): Dylan Gonda 2nd, Juniors 13-14. John Wunderlin 13th, Cat 3. Justin Sprung 21st, Darryl Dolby 30th, Bob Lynch 38th, Jason Goodin 45th (first in road rash), Cat 4. Jeremy Van Spronsen 36th, Cat 5 <37 age group. Bill Figeley 13th, Cat 5 ≥ 37 age group.


A Trailblazer 2011 Ride Report

By Paul Selden

Five KBC "easy riders" met at 9:00 A.M., Saturday May 7 to ride the Kal-Haven Trailblazer 2011. Individual rider fees were $25. The fees were fair, since they went to support the Kal-Haven and Kalamazoo River Valley Trails. Fees also included the cost of all the great refreshments for riders at various stops along the way (not to mention the nifty carabiner souvenir).

This was a ride that almost didn't happen for a lot of us.

Throughout the prior week (if you can remember the forecast as far back to the week before Mother's Day and the inaugural Kalamazoo Marathon), the weather had been universally predicted to be cool and rainy that Saturday. The forecast was credible, given the generally cool and rainy April.

But you know how inaccurate our forecasts can be in southwest Michigan! Toward the end of the week leading up to the Trailblazer, it looked as though a small window of acceptable ride conditions was opening. I held out hope. A bounce returned to my step. By that Friday my usual frenzy of preparation was in full sway. Tires got pumped, my bike got stowed in the trunk, and helmet, shoes, and various other gear and snacks were thrown into the front seat the night before.

As nominal ride leader, I led Marion Barnes, Dale Krueger, Renee Mitchell, and Terry O'Connor out of the parking lot. Conditions were auspicious. The air was cool, but not cold: nothing that a pair of tights, arm warmers, and a windbreaker couldn't easily handle. There were clouds in the sky, but nothing that threatened a downpour.

The riding experience of the group showed itself quickly, both in riding ability and road etiquette. As a 2010 Bike Camp grad, I noticed a number of things that perhaps more experienced KBC'ers do as a matter of course that I learned in Bike Camp.

As to safety; helmets, sunglasses, and mirrors were all in use. I didn't check whether everyone was carrying a form of ID, but I believe that we all carried cell phones. (And, whether needed or not, I got everyone's cell number and emergency contact information before we left the lot, just in case).

As to riding skills, I appreciated that everyone took turns in the lead. Hey, that bit about "drafting" really does work! The winds were light that morning; but, tucking behind whoever was taking the lead at the moment, at times I felt that I was being pulled ahead. If that's what drafting is about, I'm all for more of it. The group pretty much stuck together except when strung out on some of the longer hills. Being a fun ride and a sociable group, those in the lead always let the slower riders catch up and regain the pace after a hill. The final point this Bike Camp alumnus noted was the ample use of great signaling: calls of "car back," "clear," hand turn signals, and pointing out road hazards were the order of the day.

Oh – and it was great to have experienced navigational help whenever a turn came up. No need for a map on this run. Even though the ride organizers had marked the pavement, it was clear that the four KBC veterans in the group knew the way.

We cruised into the first SAG stop at Bloomingdale around the 20 mile mark. An hour and 15 minutes had flown by since the 10th Street parking lot. Our average speed had been 16 mph. As the sweeper in the W Ride the weekend before, yours truly felt pretty frisky. We hadn't been dawdling, but neither had we been running overly hard. The lack of a headwind made the first leg a brisk, comfortable, and invigorating ride.

At Bloomingdale, Toni Thompson (president of the Friends of the Kalamazoo River Valley Trailway, the group who won KBC's inaugural Friend of Bicycling Award) was welcoming the riders. I heard later that Toni herself had made the deliciously seasoned sloppy Joes. The cookies were fantastic, too. After wolfing down a couple of peanut butter cookies, followed by a pit stop, I was ready to hit the trail...er...road.

Dale, Marion, and Renee bid farewell to Terry and me at this point, and headed back to the trailhead. Terry and I continued to South Haven more or less via County Road 388.

The winds continued to be light and the rain continued to hold off. So did the sun; it was cloudy and cool the entire distance, past GingerMan Raceway and over the bridge at I-196/US 31.

As we neared South Haven the temperature started to drop, and the cloudy skies turned a battleship grey/blue. We approached the channel around 17¾ miles after Bloomingdale, having maintained our previous pace. Of course, I had to ride my bike out to the end of the pier! Lake Michigan played its usual role as a refrigerator, dropping the temperature by about 8 degrees into the upper 50's. The few people walking out to the lighthouse were wearing jackets.

Terry's ritual eatery seemed to be Subs 'N More, across from the Farmer's Market on Phoenix St. So we leaned our bikes against the rack outside and proceeded to invade the place, the only ones in full road bike regalia. Terry observed that in years past, Trailblazer riders would have been seen by the score all over town. This being my first Trailblazer I couldn't notice the difference. We guessed that the threat of foul weather and the local economy might have been responsible for the dip in participation. I figured that these factors accounted for the fact that when I drove up to the 10th St. Kal-Haven Trail parking lot at 8:40 that morning, I more or less had my choice of parking spaces.

Our leisurely lunch finished, we saddled up and headed back east over the bridge just after 12:30. At times on the open stretch of CR 388, a light southwest quartering wind boosted our speed. Our pace didn't stop Terry from entertaining the various horses, cows, and birds along the way with his excellent animal vocalizations. The whinnies, moos, and tweets outdid the originals in volume. Anyone who has biked through the countryside with Terry "Dr. Doolittle" O'Connor knows what I mean.

In a little over an hour we were back in Bloomingdale. Somehow my appetite for sloppy Joes and cookies had grown since lunch. This time I lucked out and was able to snatch up a cookie with two of my favorite flavors: chocolate and peanut butter. Of course, I justified my indulgence by the need to replenish my energy stores! We chatted with Ryan from Breakaway Bikes and Fitness, who told us about a few bikers he'd helped out earlier in the day. This is not the first time I've been impressed by the support that Paul Wells and the great folks at Breakaway have generously shared with our biking community.

It really paid to have an experienced ride buddy on the return trip. My Garmin wanted me to retrace our outbound path by making a left turn north to follow CR 388 at the junction of 26th Street. Terry wisely turned south at 26th, where we soon turned east on 18th Avenue and crossed into Kalamazoo County. Under a sky that was looking more and more threatening to the northeast, we turned further south on 2nd St. A few sprinkles reached us on and off, but nothing bothersome. Before we turned east again to coast down and puff back up few hills on G Avenue, we were dry again.

The wisdom of the aforementioned route involved a tradeoff that was well worth it by this stage of our ride. Terry's skillful navigation circumvented the need to do the notorious 6th Street hill, the hard way. My GPS said it was traveling some 40 mph as I zoomed in a tuck down 6th Street hill on the outbound route, but my guess is it I would have slowed by a factor of near 10, inbound! The tradeoff was that the route on the poorly maintained 18th Avenue was rough as a buckboard as it led us east though a low-traffic, scenic lowland.

We rounded the turn off G Avenue, turning south onto 10th like horses headed for the barn. Where did that burst of energy come from? We finished strong, fist bumping and shouting "Wa-hoo" as we turned into the parking lot back at the trailhead. We'd covered 76 miles in a little more than six hours (stops included) after our start.

Back at the trailhead, I recognized Paul Banner and Larry Renuart of the Friends of the Kalamazoo River Valley Trailway still staffing the Trailblazer entry and refreshment stop. I thanked them for their effort as volunteers, wishing them success in their long-standing efforts to develop the KRVT. Pocketbooks are tight these days; they'll need all the help they can get to sufficient funding by the next grant-matching deadlines.

I drove out of the parking lot that Saturday enjoying the feeling of having ridden a good way in cool but pleasant weather, my mood no doubt boosted a bit by the release of endorphins and cookie carbs throughout the day. For an older guy who had finished his first century ride just last year, I felt darn good. Proud to be wearing a KBC jersey as the 2011 biking season continues to get underway.


Monthly Minutes

The monthly KBC general club meeting was called to order by Doug Kirk at 7:02 P.M. on Tuesday, May 10, 2011 at the YMCA on Maple Street in Kalamazoo. Also attending were Mike Mock, Chris Ruohenen, Rick Whaley, Steve Johnson, Jeff Newman, Dick Nivala, Paul Pancella, Jon Ballema, Joe Kucharski, Victor Van Fleet, Dick Blincoe (a guest representing AMBUCS), Mike Boersma, Paul Selden, and Mike Krischer.

Tom Keizer was unable to attend the meeting but he left a Treasurer's Report. In April, KBC had $1,369 in income and $2,183 in expenses. There is $4,650 in the KBC checking account and $11,091 in the KBC CD.

Joe requested to become a sanctioned ride leader and his request was approved. Cullen Stevenson also requested to become a sanctioned ride leader, but because he was leading a Tuesday night ride, he was unable to attend the meeting. The requirement that a person make a request in person was waived in this instance and his request was approved.

Victor introduced Dick Blincoe, the Mobility Chair for the AMBUCS Kalamazoo Chapter. He discussed a program by the veteran's organization Lest We Forget to supply adult trykes to disabled veterans; a program that is being supported by AMBUCS. They plan to give their first set of bikes away at an event on May 25 and have submitted a grant request to KBC to help them with the funding for this project. Currently, they have funding for 6 bikes and they're planning another event in September. Dick B. also noted that this AMBUCS group is different from the AMBUCS Alive After Five group, but that the two groups are not competitors.

Mike B. asked what we have done in the past for AMBUCS and Jeff noted that we have given a donation to the Alive After Five AMBUCS group and, in return, they have run a KalTour SAG stop. Dick N. pointed out that the donations to the Alive After Five group we being used to give trykes to kids and not veterans.

Victor stated that KBC should publicize the members of KBC's Grant Review Committee (Editor's Note: See this month's President's Letter) and that we should also publicize these requests via Yahoo Groups. Doug pointed out that ultimately the Grant Review Committee will make the funding decision. Jeff reiterated that this is request for something new from AMBUCS, as opposed to what we have donated to AMBUCS previously. He also thought that we should consider donating to this cause as individuals, as well.

Mike K. gave a KalTour report. Unlike in previous years, the KalTour will not start at KVCC, but it will start near KVCC, at the Bronson Athletic Club on 9th Street south of I-94. There will be bathroom, but no shower facilities, and neighboring lots will also be available for parking on the day of the ride. For the use of their facility, the Bronson Athletic Club will be listed as a sponsor of the ride. Doug asked if we could cone off part of O Avenue, as this would make this easier for the riders. Mike B. and Paul thought that we would probably have to get permission from the Kalamazoo County Road Commission to do this. Mike K. also stated that the KalTour brochures would be ready soon.

Doug noted that the Grant Review Committee agreed to donate $400 to the Make-a-Wish road race in Lawton race on July 17. It was also noted by other meeting attendees that KBC has donated a lot of money for racing activities so far this year.

Jon reported that the Tuesday Night Time Trial Series will start on May 17 and that the races will take place the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of the month through August. He also noted that it was a good opening weekend for the KBC Racing Team as there were a couple of podium finishes for team members at the Willow Time Trial and the Cone-Azalia Classic road race. Mike B. asked how the preparations for the BTR are going and Jon stated that things are shaping up well for this race. Joe thought that when we publicize race results that we should also note members of KBC who race for other teams. Doug stated that it can be difficult to get results from races, although Joe noted that the results are on race event websites. Doug noted that if someone wants to publicize race results, it should be up to that person to provide these results to the appropriate KBC members, such as the KBC Editor.

Paul gave a Road Safety Report. He has been working with the city of Portage lately and he noted that the city allowed him to circle potholes on the Bike Camp route, so that they could be filled. He also noted that Portage is revamping the bike routes on the southern part of Portage Road. He met with the Texas Township Road Committee and noted that they are on board with what the club is doing. This summer, the township will try to chip seal roads so that there will be easily accessible alternate routes for bicyclists to use.

Paul also reminded the meeting attendees that KBC will have a speaker at the June Monthly Meeting. Mike M. noted that there will be road construction on 12th Street from C Avenue to the Kalamazoo County line this summer.

There was no old business, but in new business, Mike B. reported that the Facebook page for KBC has been upgraded and that pictures and videos can now be added. Mike K. noted that there has been publicity for Bike Camp in the Portage Press and the Portage Parks flyer.

Steve reported that he is opening a new bicycle shop on Gull Road near the intersection of Gull Road and Sprinkle Avenue. He will be providing a 10% discount for KBC member. Paul noted that the new bicycle shop Pedal is also doing this. Doug asked how KBC members can prove that they are KBC members at bicycle shops that are providing this discount and Joe suggested that club members print out the e-mail announcement from Paul Bruneau that the Pedal Press is online, since this e-mail also states that the person receiving this e-mail is a member of KBC.

The meeting was adjourned at 7:59 P.M.

Rick Whaley for Bill Figeley, KBC Secretary



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Editor's Letter – I Guess that Breaking Up isn't so Hard to Do

My 2008 Lemond Zurich bicycle and I have had a complicated relationship. Compared to its more easygoing steel framed cousin, my 1997 Lemond Zurich, my newer carbon framed bicycle was like a tempestuous woman that I could never fully tame. (And what's your reclining chair like Mr. Pedal Press Editor? On second thought, never mind.) My new bicycle was lighter and more responsive; sometimes too responsive, and it took me an entire riding season to get used to the way my new bicycle handled. At times during that season, I thought that maybe I had made a bad decision when I bought this bike. However, by the early part of the 2009 riding season, I found that I was really starting to enjoy the way it rode, and any thoughts of getting a new road bike were banished. My new bike and I were now a couple and my reclining chair was jealous.

And so, my 2008 Lemond and I made the trip to Ohio last month to do the TOSRV ride; the tour that I discussed in my last month's Editor's Letter. I'm happy to say that no rest sofas were needed during the ride and my two riding companions and I rolled up to the Ohio state capitol building on Sunday with the satisfaction of knowing that we had successfully completed another TOSRV.

Unfortunately, what I didn't successfully complete was the walk down the stairs to the parking garage below the state capitol. As I started walking down the steps; my right arm wrapped around my bicycle like a starry-eyed teenager in love, my cycling shoe caught the edge of a step and I started to lose my balance.

In that split second afterwards, I knew that I had to make a decision and I had to make it quickly. I realized that I could hang onto my bike and tumble down the steps headfirst along with it or I could let go of my bike and attempt to regain my balance with both arms free. Now, as I've discussed above, I'm at the point where I love my bike as much as the next figurative teenager, but I'm not at the point where I'm going to take a figurative bullet for it, either. So, I let go of the bike.

This maneuver worked, at least for me. I flailed about, accompanied by the clanging sound that a bicycle makes while it hits concrete steps, and I managed to regain my balance. While the noise that my bike made was unsettling; upon inspection, my bicycle also looked okay. So, I put my bike into my car and, soon afterwards, drove off to my younger brother's house in suburban Dayton where I spent the next couple days.

I returned to Portage on Tuesday and I when I got ready to ride for the first time after the aforementioned clanging, I realized that the handlebar was off kilter, so I straightened it out and did an easy 10 mile ride. The next day, at the Wednesday night ride, I did a not-at-all-easy 30 mile ride. After the ride, I discovered that the top tube was cracked in two places. Apparently, what had happened was that the right edge of the handlebar had hit a step with enough force to twist it and slam the left part of the handlebar into the top tube, weakening it enough so that it eventually cracked. I was not a happy man, but happier, I suppose, than I would have been if the top tube had completed cracked through while riding 35 mph down the Van Buren County route 388 hill.

The thought of buying a new bicycle was less than appealing and the thought of trying to replace a frame for a bicycle that was no longer being made was also not so appealing. So, I ended up sending my frame out to a place in California that repairs carbon frames, a procedure that will not be cheap, but cheaper than buying a new frame, let alone a new bike. I'm hoping I'll have it back by the time the KalTour takes place, but until then, my 1997 Lemond is my new ride of choice. So, although it is now the case that breaking up with my bicycle is hard to do, I found out that breaking up my bicycle isn't so hard to do, especially when it has a carbon frame.

And now that I've time to think about this some more, I've realized that this wasn't just an unfortunate accident; this was also a form of performance art. Just as Pete Townshend, the guitarist for The Who, used to smash his instrument at the end of each performance, this was my way of smashing my instrument at the end of my recent performance. In retrospect, it would have been better if I had eased into making a statement via this form of performance artistry, just to see if this sort of artistic expression suited me. I could have started by snapping a pencil after the completion of each successful checkbook balancing. From there, I could break a scrub brush after each successful toilet bowl cleaning, and then bash an edge trimmer against my house at the completion of each successful lawn mow. Then, if it still felt right, I could start destroying a bicycle at the completion of each successful bicycle tour.

Still, I suppose that the die is now cast. So, if I am to continue down this sort of unexpected artistic career path, I'd better have some deep pockets and I'll need to put the carbon frame repair company on my speed dial. And if you see me riding the KalTour with a can of lighter fluid in my jersey pocket, I'd stick around for the end of my ride, if I were you. It will be worth your while, particularly if you bring marshmallows.

Rick Whaley, KBC Newsletter Editor


Some Upcoming Rides of Interest

Saturday, June 4. Three Rivers Bike Ride. Three Rivers. 45 miles. (269) 273-8860 or (269) 816-0530.

Saturday, June 4. 100 Grand Bicycle Tour. Grand Rapids. 17, 36, 65, 105, and 141 miles. www.rapidwheelmen.com/100Grand.

Saturday, June 18. 12th Annual Pumpkinvine Bike Ride. Goshen and Shipshewana, IN. 10, 30, 48, 69, and 100 miles. www.pumpkinvine.org.

Saturday, June 25th, 2011. Tim's Wild Ride. A Kalamazoo Civic Theater fund raiser/bike ride. 13-31-62- and 100 mile routes. Leaving from downtown Kalamazoo. Support the 2nd largest community theater in the United States and have a good time with the theatrical set. http://kazoocivic.com/ for more information.

Saturday and Sunday, June 18 and 19, National 24-Hour Challenge, Middleville, MI. Yes, it is a challenge. See how far you can ride a bicycle in 24 hours. www.n24hc.org.

Sunday, June 26. Berrien County Cancer Service Bike Ride. Stevensville. 15, 25, 42, and 100 miles. www.bccancerservice.org.

Monday, July 4. Fourth of July Canadian Century. Grand Haven. 100 km. www.rocknroadcycle.com.

Saturday, July 9. One Helluva Ride 35th Annual. Chelsea. 15, 30, 39, 64, 76, and 100 miles. www.aabts.org.

Sunday, July 10. Kalamazoo Scenic Bicycle Tour (KalTour). Kalamazoo. 12, 15, 31, 61, and 100 miles. www.kalamazoobicycleclub.org. Ride or volunteer in support of your club’s ride!

Wednesday through Sunday, August 31 – September 4. 41st Annual Dick Allen Lansing to Mackinaw (DALMAC) Bicycle Tour. Five rides over 4 or 5 days, ranging from 283 to 402 miles. Registration has begun and all rides except for the Quad Century fill up quickly. www.DALMAC.org.


Classified Ads

New: 2008 Trek Madone 4.5 (size 56). Less than 400 road miles due to injuries and surgery. $1500. See the specs at the following link: http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes/2008/archive/madone45. Phone: 269-352-3199. E-mail: ox7fresh@gmail.com.

For Sale – Girls Trek MT-60 (mineral blue) in excellent condition, bought new in June 2007, adjustable for a 5 year-old up to 9 year-old, 6-speed with front and rear grip shift hand brakes, also has front shocks. Our daughter outgrew it and is now in an adult size mountain bike. Owner's manual and matching helmet included, photos available upon request. $125. Please contact Stephanie Sabin at (269) 350-6225 or sabinsms@gmail.com

Kestrel 200 SC road bike with Shimano DuraAce components and EMS composite forks. Campagnolo Omega wheels. White in color, good condition. Not sure how old it is (probably 1990s), but I bought it used in around 2000 and used it for about 15 Olympic distance triathlons, plus about 200 miles per year. Not sure what size it is, but it stands 32 inches high at the top tube. Asking price is $600, but will consider any offer. E-mail Rob at rkengis@hotmail.comor call 269-664-6489.

I am looking for a used carbon fiber bike. Contact Maggie Miller at maggiemiller@rocketmail.com.

Cannondale Ironman 2000 (model year 2003) time trial bike. Size 56 with the CAAD5 Aero frame. Components are Ultegra and Dura-Ace with Spinergy Xaero Lite 650 wheels. Additional race accessories include Zipp 800 full disk rear and Zipp 400 front with new tubular tires. Extra sets of tires included. $1,500 for full setup. Will also consider selling without Zipp racing wheelset. Call 806-7164 or contact Kellam.glen@yahoo.com.


Shop Notes

Alfred E Bike

320 East Michigan, Kalamazoo, (269) 349–9423

Billy's Bike Shop

63 East Battle Creek Street, Galesburg, (269) 665–5202

Breakaway Bicycles

185 Romence at Westnedge, Portage, (269) 324–5555,

Custer Cyclery

104 North Augusta, Augusta, (269) 731–3492

Gazelle Sports

214 South Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo, (269) 342–5996,
Did you miss running in the inaugural Kalamazoo Marathon? Don't miss 2012! Train with Gazelle Sports' Summer Safari Marathon or Half-Marathon Training Program. Kick-off meeting on June 2 at 6:00 P.M. Training begins June 11. (In case you didn't get this memo in time... attendance at the kick-off meeting is NOT mandatory.) Visit www.Gazellesports.com/Training for more information.

NEW: Johnson Cycle Works

5309 Gull Road, Kalamazoo, (269) 226-0001.


611 W Michigan Avenue, Kalamazo, (269) 56–PEDAL
info@pedalbicycle.com and www.pedalbicycle.com

Team Active

22 W Michigan, Battle Creek, 1–800–841–9494

Village Cyclery

US 131 in Schoolcraft, 679–4242

Zoo City Cycle & Sports

4328 South Westnedge, Kalamazoo (269) 552–3000


Bicycling Safety Disclaimer

Important: Riding a bicycle is an inherently dangerous activity. There are risks of injury or death. You could ride over something and fall, or get hit by an automobile or strike or be struck by another bicyclist. There are many other dangers to bicycling as well.

While nothing can eliminate all risks associating with bicycle riding, to minimize the danger, make sure you and your bicycle are in good riding condition. Know the rules of the road and also of the group you're riding with, and ride in a manner consistent with the protocols of that group. Always wear a bike helmet, use bike lights if riding in the dawn, dusk or dark, and consider purchasing and riding with additional safety equipment such as reflectors and rear view mirrors.