Kalamazoo Bicycle Club Newsletter
September 2008

September 2008 President’s Letter

Please remember that starting September 1, KBC rides will start at 6:00 PM.

The third annual BTR Bike Race was a success this year. About 180 racers came out to compete in the races. The weather was beautiful. The event went smoothly. The races were fun to watch. There were no doping scandals to cloud the event. The BTR Bike race drew almost as many competitors as the race last year and there is still room to grow. Western Michigan University was happy with the event so look for details about the next year’s BTR Race. Please feel free to share suggestions about improving the event for next year.

I remain concerned about the level of participation by women in the BTR race. There were fewer women competing this year than last year. I realize that low turnout by women in road cycling competitions is not new; change will require a new approach to this problem. I urge folks to be creative and to share suggestions with the KBC board. I would hope that a goal of doubling the number from this year can be met next year.

The days are getting shorter. Please remember that bright clothing is easier to be seen by motorists than dark clothing. Lights also make your bike visible on dark or cloudy rides. Lights are also required to be used when riding one half hour before sunset. Please think "Close Encounters" when riding to and from KBC rides for the rest of the season.

The Anniversary Ride is coming! Please keep the date. You will receive more information about this ride elsewhere in the newsletter.

Mike Boersma, KBC President

KAL-TOUR Pictures

Included, for your viewing pleasure, are 8 of the 105 pictures taken by Zolton Cohen during the Kal-Tour ride in July. All 105 pictures can be viewed at www.zoltoncohen.com under "Local Cycling" in the Kal-Tour 2008 album.
Registration Tent

Pair of riders, before the KalTour

Three riders, before the KalTour

 A group of riders

Another group of riders

Cookies and Camaraderie at the Briar Patch

AMBUCS Volunteers

Two happy riders

KBC Anniversary Ride and Picnic 2008

Come one and all to the KBC Anniversary Ride and Picnic being held on Saturday, September 20, 2008 starting at 10 A.M. at the Kal-Haven Trailhead parking lot on 10th Street in Kalamazoo.

The Anniversary Ride is a great opportunity for KBC members and their families to ride together in a relaxed atmosphere, and it provides a chance to catch up on summer adventures and gear up for the fall season. Bring the family, or have them meet you at the trailhead after the ride for good food and fun!

Several road rides will leave from the Kal-Haven Trailhead at 10 A.M. on that day. There may also be a ride on the Kal-Haven Trail. The idea is to return to the trailhead around noon, just in time for a picnic. The Club will provide pizza, soda, cider, and tableware. We ask you to bring a dish to share according to your primary helmet color.

If your primary helmet color is

  • Red or Yellow: Please bring a salad.
  • White or Silver: Please bring an appetizer.
  • Black or Blue: Please bring a dessert.
  • Other: Surprise us!

Ride details: Riders will leave the trailhead parking lot at 10 A.M. on routes of 14, 19, 23, 31 or 36 miles. You choose your route and group, and time your speed to get back at about noon, when the food will show up. Maps of the various routes will be provided. Riders doing the longest route, 36 miles, have averaged about 18-19 mph in the past.

Seating is limited at the trailhead, so consider bringing your own chair too. Bring your trail pass if you have one, if not, don’t worry, enjoy the morning at the trail - no charge to you, it’s on us (KBC)! Mark your calendars for Saturday, September 20, pack up the family, bikes, and food - we look forward to seeing you there!

Renee Mitchell and Jelania Haile, KBC Social Directors

Fall Color Ride and Cyclo-Cross Clinic

The Annual Fall Color Ride will be held on Saturday, September 27 and the annual Cyclo-Cross Clinic will be held on Sunday, October 12. Both of these events will be at St. Timothy’s church in Richland. See the September Ride Captain’s Report for more information about these events.

Monthly Meeting Minutes

Date: Tuesday, March 11, 2008 7 P.M.

Chair: Jim Kindle, KBC Vice-President

Location: YMCA - Maple Street

Recorder: Elaine Naegele, Secretary

KBC’s monthly meeting took place on Tuesday, August 12, 2008. Jim Kindle, Elaine Naegele, Tom Keizer, Rick Whaley, Mike Krischer, Jelania Haile, Terry O’Connor, Dick Nevala, Paul Pancella, Zolton Cohen, and Scott Powers were in attendance.

Jim Kindle welcomed everyone to the meeting and all present introduced themselves. Mike Boersma was out of town and unable to attend the meeting. Tom Keizer provided the Treasurer’s report.

A discussion took place about the performance of the current webmaster, Bob Paksi. Concerns have been expressed by Mike B. and others over the last few months that due to other responsibilities he has not been able to perform the duties of the position in a timely manner. A motion to remove him from his position by made by the Secretary (Elaine Naegele) and seconded by the treasurer (Tom). The motion was passed by the officers present (Elaine, Tom and Jim). Mike B. or Jim will contact Bob to let him knew that he has been relieved of his duties. Zolton Cohen offered to talk with David Jones and with Jeff Newman, who have both expressed an interest in taking over the position for the remainder of the year, and he will report back at the September meeting, for a vote by the officers.

Mike Krischer reported that the KalTour netted between $1000 and $1500, although he is still in the process of preparing a final report. There was some discussion about when to hold the 2009 KalTour; whether it should continue to be held the second week in July, as it was this year, and whether to move it to a Saturday. Mike K. will provide a recommendation about the time of the event at the September meeting

Jelania Haile reported that the KBC Anniversary Ride and picnic will be held at the Kal-Haven trailhead on Saturday, September 20, 2008. More details about this ride will be published in the September Pedal Press.

Paul Pancella provided an update on the progress of the Kalamazoo Valley River Trail. He reported that the connector between the Kal Haven trail and downtown Kalamazoo is almost complete and that the public is already using the trail. Members were asked to contact Paul if they have any fundraising ideas for the trail.

Elaine Elaine provided information about the Road ID affiliate program. In exchange for Road ID information being posted on KBC’s website, KBC will receive a commission on all ID tags ordered through the website. Although the club has discussed having advertising on its website in the past, unlike previous advertisers, this company has offered us something in return, and their product is not sold in local bike shops. No motion was made whether to become an affiliate; this was provided by Elaine for informational purposes. This may be discussed further sometime in the future. More information about this program can be found in the affiliate program at www.roadid.com.

Discussion concerning whether KBC should apply for 501(c)(3) continued at this meeting. Zolton stated that he believes that the plan would commit future members to increased paperwork with the main benefit being a decrease mailing and room rental costs. Those present at the meeting remained divided on the issue and no action was taken.

The next KBC monthly meeting is scheduled for 7:00 P.M., Tuesday, September 9, 2008, at the YMCA on Maple Street in Kalamazoo. All club members are invited to attend this, and every, meeting.

Elaine Naegele, KBC Secretary


The electronically-distributed KBC PedalPress comes out on or around the first of each month.

If you have an article or a notice that you want to go into the PedalPress, please email it to the newsletter editor, fswhaley@comcast.net by the 20th of the month before its intended publication.

For example, if you’d like an article to be published in the October edition (distributed on or around the first of October), have it to the newsletter editor by the 20th of September.

KBC Statistics

Active subscriptions


New members

Becky Argue • Michelle Frederick • Christopher Gifford • Michael Gregor • Kathy Johnson • Hans Juntunen • Burt LeClercq • Haig Marino • David Merwin • Jessica Stephenson-Parise • Elizabeth Warner • Tucker York

September Expiring memberships:

Lee Anderson • John Aune • Bruce Caple • Mark Chicoine • Cathy Doan • Wil Fisher Family • John Idema • David Jarl • Joe Kucharski Family • Connor Loftus • David Middleton Family • Peter Post & Holly Nibert • Harvey & Janet Ross • Bill Smyser • Stephanie Walbridge • Jim Wilson

Renewed memberships

Joseph & Julie Dill • Sherry Gordon • Lawrence & Sheri Jones • Larry Kissinger • Janice Selby • Steve Stapleton • Ronald Gauthier Family • Doug McDonnell Family • Alan Dahl • Charles Barnes • Daniel Goldberger • Richard Smith • Gary Brooks Family • Barry Kearns • Robin Carpenter Family • Allison Kelaher Young • Bill Figeley • Kenneth Grabowski Family • Jon Ballema

Paul Bruneau, KBC Database Manager

League Cycling Instructors (LCIs) Corner

We completed our first Road 1 Course on August 23 and we had a wonderful group of graduates! We would like to congratulate KBC members Bill Braun, Gary Brooks, Henry DeVries, Doug Kirk, Kathy Kirk, Leslie Mars, and Ed Micalizzi on a job well done. They were a fun group to work with! A couple of students in the group are interested in the LCI Certification (League Cycling Instructor), so we are excited about that and are looking into hosting that in the Spring of 2009.

Below is a list of courses developed by the League of American Cyclists (LAB) that we as LCIs are certified to teach. If anyone is interested in any of these courses or would like more information on other offerings, please contact us (info below). There is a wealth of information to share and endless ways to share it!

Road I
Develop your bicycle handling and traffic skills. Learn to ride safely in traffic and on multi-use trails, and to fix common mechanical problems.

Road II
Build upon the cycling and mechanical skills learned in Road I.

Bicycle Commuting
Learn the tips and tricks to getting to work or running errands by bike.

Motorist Education
Discover how a motor vehicle driver can share the road safely by learning to think like a cyclist.

Kids I
Parents - Learn how to choose a bike, fit a helmet and teach your child to ride.

Kids II
Enroll your middle school aged child to learn the traffic rules and skills to bike safely on neighborhood streets.

Safe Routes to School
Middle school aged students will learn to practice the skills to walk and bicycle safely to school. Adults can acquire the teaching materials and skills to train.

September Cycling Tip:

As fall approaches and the nights become shorter and weather cooler, it’s always good to be reminded of some common bicycling practices we may often take for granted. Have an awesome fall!

Ten Commandments of Bicycling*

  1. Wear a helmet for every ride and use lights at night.
  2. Conduct an ABC Quick Check before every ride.
  3. Obey traffic laws: ride on the right, slowest traffic farthest to right.
  4. Ride predictably and be visible at all times.
  5. At intersections, ride in the right-most lane that goes in your direction.
  6. Scan for traffic and signal lane changes and turns.
  7. Be prepared for mechanical emergencies with tools and know-how.
  8. Control your bike by practicing bike handling skills.
  9. Drink before you are thirsty and eat before you are hungry.
  10. Have fun!

*List obtained from www.bikeleague.org

September Ride Captain’s Report

Dear KBC Friends:

With the onset of cooler weather, I'm all the more eager to enjoy our September evening rides, before the season begins to draw to a close. With extended daylight saving time, we plan to extend our ride schedule into November, but, of course, the weather becomes pretty iffy in the late fall.

For the time being, please remember that all regular weekday September evening rides begin promptly at 6:00 P.M. Remember also that, with the sun a little lower in the sky, it becomes a bit more difficult for car drivers to see us through the glare, so an extra measure of caution is needed.

I also want to alert you to two special upcoming events that many have come to look forward to over the years.

This year's Annual Fall Color Ride is scheduled for Saturday, September 27, leaving from St. Timothy Church, Richland, at 9:00 A.M. We ride 40 miles into Barry County, stopping for 10 minutes in Banfield to buy snacks. We typically average 18.0 mph, and work on keeping the group together at that speed. It's a fun, chatty sort of ride. Sometimes Zolton even takes our picture, and puts it in the Pedal Press!
St. Timothy's is on BC Avenue, north of Richland, 7/10 of a mile east of M-43. Coming from M-43, if you get to a golf course, turn around--you've gone too far!

This year's Annual Cyclo-Cross Clinic is scheduled for Sunday, October 12, from 3:00-5:00 P.M. It, too, will be held at St. Timothy Church, Richland

Jonathan Evans will be setting up this year's cyclo-cross course, and all participants will be required to sign a waiver. It's not a race, but it is a good way to get a feel for cyclo-cross, and the weather is usually just about perfect at that time of year. Even if you don't want to ride, you may want to come out to watch. Last year my son Paul taco'd his front wheel spectacularly

Hope you all have been having a great season! Many KBC riders have had great personal cycling accomplishments this year. Congrats to you all!

Best regards,

Knute Jacobson, KBC Ride Captain

Editor’s Letter – The Dog Days of August and the Dog Day of July

A few hours before I started writing this letter, I finished a 50 mile ride (o.k., it was 47.52 miles for those of you who are sticklers for precision), riding in the morning in order to beat the heat. I didn’t exactly beat the heat, since it was getting rather sticky during the last few miles, but I’d say that I fought it to a draw at the very least. As I reflected upon the ride while drinking my almost obligatory post ride Gatorade, I realized that we haven’t had very many scorching hot summer days this year, not that I’m complaining, of course. And then I started to think about another ride in another place in another time ….. a ride where not only did the heat win, it trashed talked, insulted my mother, and repeatedly poked me with a sharp stick.

The place was Hanover, New Hampshire, the time was July 1988, 20 years ago, a time when the Tour de France was only a gleam in the eyes of a 16 year old Lance Armstrong, and the KBC Tuesday night time trial wasn’t even a gleam in the eyes of the Newsletter Editor. I had moved to Hanover 11 months earlier to work at the Dartmouth Medical School, and soon after, I heard about a century ride held each July to raise money for its affiliated cancer center. Although I was more of a runner than a cyclist at the time, I made a mental note to be ready when the time came to test myself over 100 miles of rolling asphalt. And I thought I was …… except for the weather.

The week leading up to the ride had been unseasonably hot by northern New England standards. No, this does not mean that the temperature was breaking 80 degrees; the temperature was reaching well into the 90s. The forecast for the day of the ride promised more of the same. Fortunately, there were a couple of things in my favor. First, the course was about as flat as could be expected given the general terrain of the area. We would be riding north on New Hampshire state route 10, which hugged the Connecticut River, for the first 20 miles of the ride, and after taking a relatively short detour deeper into New Hampshire territory, we would rejoin route 10 and cross the river into Vermont after 60 miles. At that point, we’d ride on U.S. 5, which also hugged the Connecticut River all the way back to the outskirts of Norwich, Vermont, and cross over the river back into Hanover. Second, there were rest stops about every 15 miles, which would be very handy in the days when bicycles (at least my bicycle) only had one water bottle cage and a Camelback was only a gleam in the eyes of some unknown (at least to me) inventor.

So, I began the ride cautiously. My caution paid off, as I began the Vermont portion of the ride, still feeling pretty chipper, although it was almost noon and almost 90. Fifteen miles of rollers later, I reached the next rest stop, feeling not-so-chipper. At this point, my original plan had been to ride right by the 90 mile rest stop and cruise into Hanover, a century conquered by Whaley the Century Conqueror (or so I fancied myself). However, at this point, I now realized that I needed a new plan; a plan that called for a ride by Whaley the Don’t Humiliate Myself Century Finisher.

So, I began riding again, through another 15 miles of rollers, reaching the 90 mile rest stop, feeling like I’d been through a wood chipper. I then spent the next 40 minutes sitting in the shade trying to psych myself up for the last 10 miles of the ride. By then, the temperature had reached 98 degrees.

Now, it should be noted that the last couple miles of the 10 remaining miles were not just any ordinary miles. Upon crossing over the Connecticut River, a cyclist had 3 ways of riding into Hanover, all of them uphill. A rider could turn left just after crossing the river and ride into the heart of the Dartmouth campus, a gradual uphill and the easiest of the three. However, this way was also the farthest from the start and finish of the ride. Alternatively, a rider could continue to head straight and then turn right about a half mile later, skirting through the south end of the “downtown” of Hanover and back to the finish. This was the way I always finished my own rides, and I lived only about 200 yards from the finish, so it would have been logical to have used this way. But, in their infinite wisdom, the ride organizers chose the third way. This involved continuing to ride straight past the right turn, whereupon the grade immediately steepened for the next couple hundred yards, until a rider reached the Dartmouth Inn at the edge of the college and the downtown. At least the final half mile was mercifully flat.

So, as I began the last 10 miles of the ride, I knew what lay ahead. Did I take it stoically with the realization that life isn’t always easy and what doesn’t kill me will make me stronger? Are you kidding??? For the next 8 miles, I whined and complained and obsessed to myself about the route that the organizers had chosen. I suppose I could have taken my usual route anyway, but it also would have cut a little bit of distance from the ride and the ethics of the situation compelled me to take the route that included the entire distance. But it did not compel me to be a man about it.

Now, at this point you might be thinking that all of this obsessing on my part was much ado about nothing; that once I got to the steep part of the hill, I would find that it wasn’t as bad as I imagined it might be, and you would be wrong. It was awful. Brief, but awful. As Paul Sherwen might say, I reached into my Suitcase of Courage, only to find a couple of dirty socks. So, I rode the final half mile to the finish utterly exhausted, to be greeted by the smell of grilled hamburgers and hot dogs that were to be served as part of the post-ride meal. Rather than tickling my taste buds, I found this to be nauseating. So, I decided to walk (not ride) back to my apartment, take a shower, and walk back to the finish, hoping that at some point I could find my lost appetite.

Once I got back to my apartment, I took off my soggy clothes and stepped into the shower. I then discovered that the act of actually standing in a shower was more than my heat stressed body could bear, so I proceeded to take my shower sitting down in the tub. Then after drying off and putting on some cool, comfortable clothing, I proceeded to leave my apartment to attempt to replenish my depleted carbohydrates with some protein.

At least that was my intention. But, as I walked towards the door, I heard the siren song of my reclining chair, cooing in its most seductive voice, a cross between Mae West and Barry White. “Sit in me, Rick, please sit in me, relax and close your eyes. It will only be for just a moment.” Well, maybe it didn’t sound that seductive, but in the absence of a mast in my living room, let alone someone to tie me to it, I readily succumbed to the charms of my reclining chair. When I opened my eyes again, 90 minutes had past.

While I was sleeping, my appetite had crawled back into my stomach, so at least I didn’t have to go looking for it, but this also meant that I had only 10 minute to get back to the finish area before they stopped serving food. By this time, I was in good enough physical condition to walk 200 yards in 10 minutes with a couple of minutes to spare, so I was able to fill my stomach and then walk home once again. A few hours later, I topped off the day by going to bed at 9:30 P.M. and sleeping for about 10 hours.

I’d like to say that there’s a moral to this story, but I’m not sure there is one. “Don’t ride when it’s 98 degrees, you idiot!” isn’t a particularly uplifting moral. Still, at least I got a story out of it, a story that I wouldn’t have had, if I had spent the day lounging in my reclining chair watching a ball game and eating cheese doodles. I guess you can say that about a lot of bad experiences; lousy at the time, but they do make good stories eventually. So, if you ever see someone riding a bicycle while poking himself with a sharp stick, it’s not a hallucination, it’s only me. After all, I’ve got an Editor’s Letter to write.

Rick Whaley, KBC Newsletter Editor

Some Upcoming Area Rides of Interest

Sunday, September 28th - Apple Cider Century, Three Oaks, MI. 25, 50, 62, 75, and 100 miles. (888) 877-2068 www.applecidercentury.com

Saturday, October 11th - Colorburst, Lowell, MI. 17,32,62, and 102 miles. (616) 245-3341. www.rapidwheelmen.com/colorburst

Classified Ads

Tri-bike, Titanium LightSpeed Catalyst, 56 cm frame, aero bar shifters, 105 Shimano components. $800. Call Mike at 327-0387.

Rockymountain 56cm Solo 30AC, aluminum and carbon (rear-triangle). The bike has 105 10-speed components throughout and Easton EC90SLX carbon fork (330gr); wheels are Richey DS Pro. The bike is in great shape with less than 500 miles on it. Looking to get $1200 or best offer. Call Jeff at 269-965-3560

Shop Notes

Alfred E Bike

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

Billy’s Bike Shop

63 East Battle Creek Street, Galesburg, 665-5202

Breakaway Bicycles

185 Romence at Westnedge, Portage, (269) 324-5555, www.breakawaybicycles.com

Custer Cyclery

104 North Augusta, Augusta, 731-3492

Gazelle Sports

214 South Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo, (269) 342-5996, www.Gazellesports.com

Mark your October calender!

Visit a Gazelle Sports store October 2-5 and get 20% OFF ALL pearl Izumi products. What a deal!!


4323 W Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo Mi 49006-5810

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.

KBC Contact Information

KBC Officers

President Mike Boersma 269-720-1409
Vice President Jim Kindle 269-382-8053
Secretary Elaine Naegele 269-353-5756
Treasurer Tom Keizer 269-382-4737

Other Important KBC Folks

Database Manager Paul Bruneau 269-343-6016
Newsletter Editor Rick Whaley (269) 324-1577
Ride Captain Knute Jacobson 269-629-0093
Social Director Jelania Haile 269-345-1274
Social Director Renee Mitchell
Safety and Education Chair Victor VanFleet 269-375-7691
Web Site vacant

KAL Tour

Director Michael Krischer
Director "Super" Dave Bishop 269-679-4522