Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Ride Scheduling Etiquette

WARNING: RANT AHEAD!!

We live in a rural area. Regardless of how big Sioux Falls is getting, we are a rural area. Many of us in the bicycling community are constantly traveling in the summer time on what seems like a weekly basis to each others rides. This makes for a great time, seeing fellow bicyclists often during the summer and fall.

For the most part, there seems to be an unwritten rule that if you are planning on starting a new ride that you not compete against an existing ride, especially an established ride. Last year we had an issue (and a bit of bickering) with a club close to us who discussed doing a ride on the same day. We came to an agreement and they willingly chose a different date. No blood was shed and everybody is happy because there is yet another ride to go to!

Then it happened...even against the wishes of a person I know on the ride planning committee, a new ride chose the same date in Sioux Falls. Initially I was a little upset because, as we go into our 7th year of the Margarita Ride, we have blossomed our ride into 180+ riders. All this done strictly by word of mouth as we have done no advertising for the ride at all (except an email last year that Bicycling.com sent out). The LBS's in the area all post it on their website which is a great boost for us.

The sad part is that we are both doing a ride for a great cause. The other sad part is that we are stealing riders from each others ride. Again, instead of two great rides raising money for two great causes, we are probably ending up with two 'decent' rides. I think if it was a bike club organizing the ride we could have hashed it out. But this ride is by a "big business" and seemed to not care that we have an established ride. With a friend/employee of said business on their committee and friends in the bike club that is helping them out, hopefully we can "help" them move it next year.

Disappointed...yeah you could say that. I've had time to calm down about it and we will just move on. Has anybody else ran into rides on the same day extremely close in proximity or do you feel as I do that most people will stay away from competing rides on the same date?

All that being said, sign up HERE for the most fun you can have with your clothes on!

LATE EDIT: I was asked if you HAD to keep your clothes on for the ride. There is nothing in the registration waiver relating to clothing. There ARE potential South Dakota Laws that MAY come into play however. Clothe as much or as little as you wish and enjoy!

10 comments:

DIRK said...

Hey BB! Good rant! You know that if a bike club had anything to do with the schedule, it would be on a different date.
I think the difference here is the Margarita Ride is a BIKE RIDE set up by cyclists raising money for a good cause. The ride in Sioux Falls is a FUNDRAISER with bike ride set up by a business.
I hope both rides are better than "decent" and that one (the one in SF) gets moved to another weekend next year.

Hooterville Mayor said...

I hope so to Mr. Prez, or I will miss the business fundraiser ride again next year....

thE_kErnEl said...

Actually, I'm going to have to disagree with the President. I wouldn't call the Bike 4 Breast Cancer ride a fund raiser as it is an awareness ride. The minimal fee doesn't even cover the cost of the ride, not to mention the door prizes.

OTOH, it IS on the wrong date, heck it's even in the wrong month. Breast cancer awareness is October ;-) Hopefully, the date will change next year. I'll support it this year as I feel somewhat responsible, but next year I'm drinking Margaritas like I have for the past 5 years.

Perhaps if Sanford hears the problem with the date enough times, then they'll have it in early October when it belongs.

Just my .02

DIRK said...

As usual the kernel is right... Note to self, difference between awareness and fundraising. Guess I am letting out a little frustration too because almost everyone I talk to is going to the margarita ride.

thE_kErnEl said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mytzpyk said...

Nice post KB. It's got some non internet buzz. Please don't assume your points weren't discussed 9 months ago when the board learned of the date conflict.

From what I can see FAB does value developement of the statewide bicycling community (ex. paying for our members transportation to the SD coalition) but I see it also has a committment to Sanford and this ride for breast cancer.

The decision (as all FAB decisions are) was made by a board of 9 individuals, some of who are big suporters and long time participants of the Margarita Ride.

Like marriage - committments aren't always convienient.

I think FAB is grateful for Sanford's "Yellow Jersey" membership demonstrating relatively significant financial support to local cycling.

I think the good news is you apparently have a friend within the ride organization, we have a board member within the ride organization, and FAB, if it's successful in staying friends with its "Yellow Jersey" member, should be in a good position to influence next year's ride date. As you demonstrate through your efforts - it's always better to be on the inside and participating than to wish things were different and not participating.

So, when's next year's Margarita Ride? You know how organizations like Sanford like to plan ahead. Perhaps even as soon as 9/13 we'll be offered the same deal we were this year - subject to board approval of course.

bikingbrady said...

Well said MC. I didn't think about your corporate sponsorships for FAB and I understand WHY you would feel the need to help them, as well you should.

My frustrations wasn't with FAB, I hope you all know that. Privately I also had the comment that they have so many events going on that they didn't have many other dates to choose from, which is also a point I didn't think about. I just hate the idea of "watering down" two rides when both could be great.

As far as future planning: MR is always on the 2nd Saturday of September. We left it there for ease of planning. SOooooo...when meeting for next year....tell them the numbers can certainly be higher if we can work together!

bikingbrady said...

Well said MC. I didn't think about your corporate sponsorships for FAB and I understand WHY you would feel the need to help them, as well you should.

My frustrations wasn't with FAB, I hope you all know that. Privately I also had the comment that they have so many events going on that they didn't have many other dates to choose from, which is also a point I didn't think about. I just hate the idea of "watering down" two rides when both could be great.

As far as future planning: MR is always on the 2nd Saturday of September. We left it there for ease of planning. SOooooo...when meeting for next year....tell them the numbers can certainly be higher if we can work together!

Briman said...

Biking Brady,
I was able to participate in both events last year and am dissappointed about the scheduling conflict. I helped steer FAB towards helping with the one up here this year. It was only after we had an agreement in principle that we had the date handed down to us.
My hunch is that most roadies up here have their minds on margaritas. I'll be missing mine, and will plan on it next year!

hellimat said...

Brady

As I recall, we didn't know the date until after we'd agreed to help. Oops

Ever since we knew the date ensuring no conflicts next year has been a priority.

On the plus side, most of the riders last year (300++ ) did the bike trail route, and while most won't graduate to a long road ride, some will-- and that'll lead to more cycling buddies.