Greater City Providence

Bike Month!


I posted this late and some of these events may have already happened, sorry.

May is National Bike Month and it is being celebrated here in Rhode Island. While any month is fine for enjoying this healthy, money-saving, enjoyable and environmentally superior way to travel, with the arrival of spring, its time for many of us to savor the season, often best at the speed of a bicycle. Though it is a work in progress, the Rhode Island Bicycle Coalition announces the following calendar of events, note Bike to Work Day is Friday, May 20. Please join us for rides and events when you can. Check for updates at

[alert type=”muted”]Pre-Ride Roadside Bike Class (Bike Newport)
May 3, 10, 17, & 24 • 5:00-7:00pm • 29 Spring St, Newport
Free this month![/alert]

Bike making noises? Chain need some TLC? Brakes just not what they used to be? Ready to repair your own flat? You can give your bike the love it wants, and it’ll love you back – we promise! Join us for a basic roadside maintenance class. Topics will include pre-ride checks, fixing flats, caring for chains, and more. Classes are free for the month of May. Ladies Nights are geared toward women, girls, and female-identified. No boys allowed on those nights!

[alert type=”muted”]Bike to Breakfast (Women Bike RI)
May 6, 13, 14, & 27 • 7:30am • Various locations
Free (but bring money for your meal)[/alert]

In celebration of Bike Month, Women Bike RI is organizing an informal bike to breakfast meetup series. Join us at any of the below locations on Friday mornings throughout the month of May. We’ll fill up bike racks, support local businesses and help demonstrate that bicycle commuting can be fun! All Women Bike RI events are free.

Weekday breakfast rides will take place 7:30 – 8:30 am. Please email to learn more and join the group on Facebook.

[alert type=”muted”]Jane’s Bike of Historical Providence
May 7: • 9:00am • 24 Meeting St, Providence
$10 per person • Eventbrite[/alert]

Participate in a whirlwind tour of the Providence Preservation Society’s Most Endangered Properties (MEP), hosted by RIHPHC’s Sarah Zurier and RIBike’s Executive Director, Alex Krogh-Grabbe. See some great successes, like The Whitmarsh Apartments (1913) in Elmwood, one of the first properties ever listed as a MEP. We will also visit some losses, including the Grove Street Elementary School (1901) in Federal Hill which was partially demolished in 2007 without a permit, and eventually completely leveled in 2011.

Most of our stops will be sites still in danger, like the Kendrick-Prentice-Tirocchi House (1867) and Rhode Island Hospital’s Southwest Pavilion.

Join a discussion of what can be done to save these places before they are lost, and Providence is left with more empty lots! And talk about what local activists and city planners are doing to make Providence a safer, better connected city for bicycling.

Check out the aerial video of PPS’s 2016 List

The bike route can be found here (subject to change).

[alert type=”muted”]Group Rides (Bike Newport)
May 7, 14, & 28 • 9:00am • Various locations in Newport

Enjoy the Ocean Loop and/or Middletown Beaches – routes ranging from 12 to 25 miles. See the routes here.

[alert type=”muted”]Cafe Tour (Narragansett Bay Wheelmen)
May 7, 14, 21, & 28 • 10:00am • Veterans Memorial Pkwy, East Providence (opposite Mercer St)

In the words of John Sullivan:

The Cafe Tour is a regular Saturday ritual for a group of local bike enthusiasts. It’s just under 30 miles on the flat and visually stunning East Bay Bike Bath.

The number and makeup of riders changes weekly and there is really no leader. Everyone is welcome to join the Cafe Tour no matter your pace. The Tour stops at Your Bike Shop in Warren, R.I. right on the path, to allow everyone to gather for the final push to breakfast.
is the preferred choice for most, although a couple of the riders prefer Dunkin Donuts located a block away. Whatever the choice for coffee and food, everyone meets on the sidewalk at the Bagel shop.

On the return to Providence everyone rides at their own pace some wanting to get back quickly and others like to meander, making stops at a beach, one of the many parks, for ice cream shops, or simply to take in the sights.

[alert type=”muted”]Cyclofemme (Women Bike RI/Bike Newport)
May 8 • 9:00am • Fort Adams in Newport, and TBA in Providence

Join us in Celebrating Global Women’s Cycling Day May 8, 2016 – Honor the Past, Celebrate the Present, Empower the Future. Organized rides in both Newport and Providence. To learn more about the Providence Cyclofemme ride please email

In Newport, the ride is a scenic 10 mile bike ride around Newport’s Ocean Loop!

Cyclofemme is a Global Women’s Cycling Day created to honor women past and present and to share the love of biking with everyone along the way. We’ll leave at 9:00am from the Visitor’s Center at Fort Adams. Arrive at 8:30am for coffee, bagels, temporary tattoos, and pledges to get more women on bikes. The ride is for cyclists of all abilities. Men/boys are welcome!

[alert type=”muted”]RIBike Monthly Meeting
May 9 • 6:00pm • Flatbread Company, 161 Cushing St, Providence

Every month, usually at Flatbread Company in Providence’s Thayer Street District, we gather at 6:00 to chat about bike advocacy over pizza and beer! Come to Flatbread at 6:00pm on May 9th to hear what’s going on.

[alert type=”muted”]Bike to Beer
May 11 • 5:00-8:00pm • Ogie’s Trailer Park, 1155 Westminster St, Providence

Bike to Beer is a casual series of bike-themed socials. We specify a particular location, and you bike there after work and get a drink with other people! While we encourage people to bike to the event, we recognized that sometimes your situation may require another mode of transportation. There’s no agenda, we just want to get people together to have fun around a general bike theme. On May 11, we’re going to Ogie’s Trailer Park on the West Side. Show up between 5 and 8pm and join us!

[alert type=”muted”]Tour de Tentacle
May 13 • 6:00pm • The Arcade, 65 Weybossett St, Providence
$10 per person • Eventbrite[/alert]

Experience the dark underside of Providence like you’ve never seen it before.

A menacing energy is growing in the city and it’s up to you and your team to stop it…or to welcome the monsters in! Inspired by the arcane writing of H.P. Lovecraft, this bike-based quest around the city of Providence will require you and your three teammates to solve puzzles, fight (or help) monsters, and ultimately, to save the city from annihilation. Or if you’re feeling evil, you can open the portal to the tentacled horrors yourselves. The odyssey will take you to many of the city’s most historic sites, such as the Arcade, the Athenaeum, and Broadway’s Wedding Cake House.

A collaboration between the Rhode Island Bicycle Coalition and Lovecraft Arts & Sciences Council during National Bike Month, this event on Friday the Thirteenth of May begins at The Arcade at 6:00pm and culminates near the Industrial Trust Tower at dusk for a dark cosmic reckoning. There will be tentacles. There will be bikes (bring your own, plus helmet). And there will be beer (at the end).

Tickets are $10 and included in the registration fee is one drink ticket for afterparty – presuming you finish the quest!

The Rhode Island Bicycle Coalition and Lovecraft Arts & Sciences Council, organizers of Tour de Tentacle, would like to make it known that we unequivocally repudiate any form of racism, bigotry, xenophobia, and sexism, regardless of what the disreputable views were of a man now dead over 75 years. Lovecraft’s literary legacy lives on, and we value the positive aspects of his work’s complicated legacy, but we will do all that we can to counter his more vile personal views. They are NOT ours. Equally, the Lovecraft Arts & Sciences Council is committed to moving the weird fiction and art community further into the 21st Century and making their corner of it one that is clearly welcoming of ALL.

[alert type=”muted”]History Bike Ride (Woonasquatucket River Watershed Council)
May 14 • 9:30am • Providence Place Mall, Providence
$10 per person • Facebook[/alert]

Bike with the Woonasquatucket River Watershed Council (WRWC) and Sarah Zurier of the Rhode Island Historical Preservation and Heritage Commission on Saturday, May 14 at 9:30 am and explore settlement and industry on the Woonasquatucket River.

Stopping at several points along the River, we’ll travel back in time from the 21st century to the 17th century. Highlights include the Brown and Sharpe Manufacturing Company Complex, Riverside Park, Dyerville Mill and a visit to the Clemence-Irons House (1691) in Johnston, one of the oldest houses in Rhode Island. The house is owned and managed by Historic New England, and one of their volunteers will offer a guided walk through the distinctive stone-ender house.

This is an easy, 10 mile ride with plenty of stops. Our ride begins at Providence Place Mall and follows the Woonasquatucket River into Olneyville and Johnston and back again. We meet by the Providence Place Mall Bike Ramp at the Corner of Park Street and Promenade Street. The cost is $10/person. Our family rate is $20 maximum for a family of five or less. To participate, you must bring a bike and a helmet. To register in advance and get more information, please call (401) 861-9046.

[alert type=”muted”]East Coast Greenway Ride (East Coast Greenway Alliance)
May 15 • 9:00am • India Point Park, Providence
Free! • Eventbrite[/alert]

Meet at India Point Park in Providence for a fun and informative ride along completed and planned sections of the beautiful and historic Blackstone River Bikeway. We’ll ride from Providence to the Massachusetts/Rhode Island line and back. The approximately 44 mile tour includes stops at Kelly House for a historical presentation with NPS Park Rangers, lunch in the Woonsocket area and a sneak peak into the future with VHB’s Bill DeSantis who will lead us through the soon to open section of Blackstone River Greenway in Massachusetts.

For more information please email Rain date is Sunday, May 22, 2016.

[alert type=”muted”]BikeTalk at Mohr Library, Johnston
May 16 • 6:30pm • Mohr Library, 1 Memorial Ave, Johnston
Free • Facebook[/alert]

The BikeTalk series offers an opportunity to participate in a casual discussion or lecture around different bicycling-related themes. This talk will be a general overview of the benefits of biking for transportation, led by RIBike board members Barry Schiller and Margherita Pryor.

[alert type=”muted”]Providence Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Commission (City of Providence)
May 18 • 4:45pm • 444 Westminster St, Providence

Providence’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission (BPAC) meets monthly and advises the Mayor and City staff on how to make Providence as enjoyable to walk and bike in as possible! Mayor Elorza recently signed an executive order increasing the powers of BPAC such that every major road project happening in the city needs to come before the Commission for input. The Commission is also where the update to the city’s bike plan will be happening this year. Come to 444 Westminster Street at 4:45pm to stay informed!

[alert type=”muted”]Ride of Silence
May 18 • 6:45pm • Nelson Fitness Center, 235 Hope St, Providence
Free! • Facebook[/alert]

The Ride of Silence is a free ride that asks its cyclists to ride no faster than 12 mph, wear helmets, follow the rules of the road and remain silent during the ride. There are no national sponsors and no registration fees. The ride aims to raise the awareness of motorists, police and city officials that cyclists have a legal right to the public roadways. The ride is also a chance to show respect for and honor the lives of those who have been killed or injured. Meet on Hope Street by Brown University’s Nelson Fitness Center at 6:45pm, and the six-mile loop will bring you back there at the end.

[alert type=”muted”]Green Drinks (East Coast Greenway Alliance)
May 19 • 5:00pm • 76 Dorrance St, Providence
Free! • Facebook[/alert]

Since 1999, environmentally-interested people from all walks of life around Providence have come together each month to share conversation, drinks, and food. Through this network, people exchange information and ideas, develop professional and personal friendships, find jobs, develop synergies, help with others’ projects, become more involved through community volunteering, and have lots of fun!

Because May is National Bike Month, this Green Drinks will be hosted at the East Coast Greenway Alliance office, 76 Dorrance Street, Suite 301. There will be free indoor bike parking on the third floor, and no admission fee to the event.

[alert type=”muted”]Bike to Work Day
May 20 • 7:00-9:00am • Various locations
Free! • Facebook[/alert]

Bike to Work Day is the granddaddy of all National Bike Month events. Started in 1956, this day is a time to try out commuting to work by bike, even if that’s not something you’d normally do. This year, Bike to Work Day is on Friday, May 20th. In Rhode Island, we’re celebrating Bike to Work Day all over the state for the first time. There will be a big celebration in downtown Providence from 7-9am, in Burnside Park, with free food, booths with community organizations, and a few special guests to applaud your bicycling efforts. In Providence, there will also be bike trains coming into downtown from all parts of the city, so you don’t have to bike alone! Other communities wilth celebrations of Bike to Work Day include Newport, where the morning activities in Washington Square will be supplemented by an announcement at 4:30 and a community ride at 5:00. There will also be Bike to Work Day celebrations in Central Falls, Bristol, Warren, Smithfield, and Charlestown.

[alert type=”muted”]BikeFest
May 21 • 11:00am-3:00pm • The Met School, 325 Public St, Providence
Free! • Facebook[/alert]

Family friendly activities are scheduled throughout the day include BMX trick demonstrations from world champion rider Chris Poulos. Learn to ride area and safety discovery zone for children under 7 by Bike Newport. A children’s carnival and inflatable obstacle course from the MET School’s Entrepreneurship Center. A Scavenger Hunt through Providence courtesy of Well Rounded Events, LLC. Free test rides on Aviva Electric Assist Bicycles. A Pie Joust from Humble Pie and Women Bike RI. As well as live music including Cape Verdean Hip Hop star Chachi Carvalho, Roz & the Rice Cakes and other local favorites. BikeFest RI will also have a limited supply of free helmets courtesy of RIDOT and Mayor Elorza will personally raffle off two children’s bikes.

Other attractions include sales of new and used bicycles. Stationary bike races and workshops on commuting, maintenance and tire repair are also available. Local bicycling and outdoor related businesses will be on hand to share information about their products and various options for riding around the state. Attendees will also be able to enjoy offerings from a variety of food trucks and bicycle based food vendors.

At Noon, Mayor Elorza will greet the crowd and BikeFest will be presenting an award of appreciation to one of Providence’s Finest (PD) and other presentations. There will also be multiple raffle opportunities including a Bike, a Balance Bike, and gear from Cleverhood and REI.

BikeFest RI is sponsored by The MET School, Recycle-A-Bike, Rhode Island Bicycle Coalition, FULLCYCLE @ the MET, Providence Cyclo-Cross Festival , Julian’s Restaurants, Whole Foods Market, Narragansett Bay Wheelmen, REI, Zipcar, Providence Office of Healthy Communities, Legend Bicycle, NBX, Providence Bicycle, Dash Bicycle, Balise Subaru and AAA New England.

[alert type=”muted”]Public hearing on the draft 2016-2025 Transporation Improvement Program including bike projects as well as highways, bus and rail transit, this is at the Department of Administration Building
May 26 • 2pm and 6:30pm[/alert] [alert type=”muted”]BikeTalk with Matt Moritz – Overnighting
May 27 • 6:00pm • AS220, 115 Empire St, Providence
Free, $5 suggested donation • Facebook[/alert]

The BikeTalk series offers an opportunity to participate in a casual discussion or lecture around different bicycling-related themes. This talk will feature RIBike board president Matt Moritz, who leads many overnight bike tours through his company Well-Rounded Events. He will discuss how to plan for an overnight bike trip, including what to pack and other questions. 6-8pm at AS220 on Empire Street in Providence.

Jef Nickerson

Jef is Greater City Providence's co-founder, editor, and publisher. He grew up on Cape Cod and lived in Boston; Portland, Maine; and New York before settling in Providence. In addition to urbanism, Jef is interested in art, design, and ice cream. Please feel free to contact Jef if you have any question or comments about Greater City Providence.

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