Since 2007 a group of likeminded cyclists got together and decided to start an initiative that would encourage Winnipeggers to hop on their bikes and ride to work instead of driving. Out of that enterprise came Bike to Work Day.  

Since the massive success of this event, it has grown. In 2014 the event was expanded to include a whole week of celebrations; and with that Bike Week Winnipeg was born. 

This year’s bike week kicked off on Sunday and goes on until Saturday June 15th. Encouraging Winnipeggers to bike more often, this is fantastic reason to get out and enjoy the sunshine, warm weather, and explore Winnipeg while on the bike. 

Dave Elmore is the Board Chair for Bike Week. He is also one of the original founders of the organization Bike for the Future, which later turned into Bike Winnipeg. He explains why the group started. “When this all began way was a group of us who got together and thought ‘well we are going to have to do something different if we are going to actually connect with the city and get them to make cycling infrastructure’ that was really the reason behind the formation of Bike for the Future and then it’s transition into Bike Winnipeg.” 

Since then, Bike Winnipeg has lobbied the city for a safe cycling network for people to use regularly. 

Bike week grew out of Bike to Work Week, but as Elmore states it really is a celebration of bikes. “Our goal, really to a large degree, is about bringing about cultural change. We started with Bike to Work Day and we focused on the commuter and as we transitioned to bike week, the whole idea was to connect with a broader audience of everyone that rides a bike...and that is who we really cater to. We try to create an event that will cater to all those riders, because we like to say bike week is for everyone. And hopefully we are encouraging them to explore their city on two wheels.” 

One of the ways that Bike Winnipeg is motivating people to get out and celebrate Bike Week is by taking part in some of the numerous group rides that are happening. “They [the group rides] offer the opportunity especially for those people that are those interested but concerned riders.... to get out there in a group and see some of the options for them in terms of where they can ride and how they can ride. It also allows them to connect with the broader cycling community, and that community is very sharing and very open. It is a good opportunity for them to connect with that community and get some advice and help...or even you might just find someone who lives in your area that you can go riding with.” 

The group rides are completely free, and no registration is required. All you need to do is go to Bike Winnipeg’s Website check out what group rides are happening and make your way to the starting point. 

June is a fantastic month to get outside, and see the city, so why not do it on two wheels? 

For more details on Bike Week and events that are happening throughout the week, visit Bike Winipeg’s website.