From newbie biker to competitive racer, local bike clubs offer something for every rider.
➤ Cafeteros Cycling Club
White Plains/Greenwich, CT
No of members: 35
Membership Fee: $40 per year
Experience Level: experienced amateur racers
Signature Event: The biggest is the Tokeneke Classic in early to mid August that’s held around the Barkhamsted Reservoir and starts and finishes in East Hartland, Connecticut. The course consists of multiple loops around a hilly 22-mile circuit with about 2,000 feet of climbing per lap. The winner becomes New England Regional Champion.
Store Affiliation: Cycle Center of Stamford, Connecticut, offers discounts.
Membership Benefits: new uniforms each year
➤ Unione Sportiva Italiana Cycling Club
No. of Members: 100+ //
Membership Fee: $65/year //
Experience Level: Though all riders are welcome at this racing club, which is one of the oldest bike clubs in the nation, members should be comfortable with riding in a group. In this case, a very talented group: current and past riders have gone pro, competed in national championships, and been voted into the Cycling Hall of Fame.
Signature Event: USI is the sponsor of the Empire State Games qualifier race in the lower Hudson Valley. It also hosts the famous Gimbels Ride, a 50-mile ride beginning at the Yonkers Macy’s (formerly a Gimbels department store), on Saturdays and Sundays, and the “Unemployment Ride,” a friendlier version of the same Gimbels route, on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Store Affiliation: There are many USI sponsors, including the Pelham Bicycle Center.
Membership Benefits: Bike club jersey, discount at the club’s sponsors, and expert riding advice from seasoned bicycle racers.
➤ Westchester Cycle Club (WCC) in Hartsdale
White Plains (914) 721-6018
No. of Members: 1,400
Membership Fee: $20/year
Experience Level: The club, the biggest in the County, has rides for all levels of experience, predominantly on the roads and the trailways in Westchester, Putnam, and Fairfield counties.
Signature Event: The biggest is the Golden Apple ride, which attracted 1,200 participants last year. It takes place on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend and has rides of 25, 50, 75, 100, and 125 miles. Also: the Ride for the Daffodils in Purchase in April; the Cinco de Velo in Briarcliff Manor in May; the Independence Day ride in Rye in July; JudyStock in Mahopac in August; and BikeToberfest in Briarcliff in October.
Store Affiliation: There are 10 shops throughout the County where WCC members receive discounts.
Membership Benefits: Access to the ultra-comprehensive ride board, which features its own events (ranked according to six skill levels), its social events, cue sheets for other cycling events throughout the area, and calls to action for community-service projects.
➤ Westchester Mountain Bike Association
No. of Members: With no membership fees, the club is more loosely knit and never has an exact roster of members.
Membership Fee: None!
Experience Level: All experience levels are welcome.
Signature Event: The club has two big annual events on its calendar. The Fat-Tire Festival, which takes place in June, is a family-friendly festival with rides, games, vendors, DJs, bands, raffles, and group rides in the Blue Mountain reservation. Then, in late September or early October, the club also hosts the Chain-Stretcher, a race that is part of a series of races that goes from the Hudson to the Highlands.
Store Affiliation: Though there are no specific discounts offered, club members often work with area shops that specialize in mountain biking.
Membership Benefits: There aren’t any, but the club’s website features tons of information on biking and upcoming events.