A club for those who like to bike ride has been re-started, by the club's original organizer, in Forest City.
The Forest City YMCA Cycling Club, started by YMCA programs director Tony Reynolds, has been established.
Reynolds started a cycling club in Forest City several years ago when he was still working for Waldorf University. Though it eventually fizzled out he enjoyed it so much he wanted to start a new cycling club for the YMCA to run.
“I enjoyed going out, I enjoyed the camaraderie, just biking with a group of people,” he said. “…Got here, and I was like, ‘You know, I think this is a good place to maybe get that going again.’ It just kind of fits our mission very well.”
The club is open to anyone and everyone of all ages and abilities who wants to do some social biking.
“This is a community bike club,” Reynolds said. “…This is something we want the community to be a part of.”
This year, the club met starting the beginning of May on Mondays at 5:30 p.m. for shorter rides lasting about an hour going about 7 to 15 miles and on Saturdays at 8 a.m. for longer rides going about 15 to 25 miles over a couple hours. Reynolds said they’ll probably stop for the season when it gets too cold to be comfortable, like in the end of September or October.
The group members decides what route they will take when they meet, as it all depends on the weather, especially the direction the wind is blowing. The most common route they take is River Road, though they occasionally go out to Crystal Lake and on other routes.
Reynolds said he sees the group eventually riding down to Clear Lake or Britt for lunch and then riding back on Saturdays, though he doesn’t know if it’ll actually happen.
“It gives us kind of a day to get that longer ride in and do something a little more social,” he said.
Reynolds said he wants the riders who aren’t long-distance riders or “speed demons” to join them on Saturdays too.
“If you got enough people, you can do what they call an A group and a B group, where your A group is the fast and furious group and your B group is your more of a social rider who’s going to ride at 10, 12 mph, maybe do 10 miles,” he said.
The biggest group of cyclists so far is five people on a Monday night, despite all the feedback Reynolds got when he was asking what days and times would be best for people who were interested in the club.
“This has not taken off the way I wanted it to,” he said.
Reynolds said he thinks the lack of members might be because people know he’s an avid biker and he used to race and they might be worried about the pace and style of the bike club.
“I hope people understand that this is a social gathering, it’s not training for a race-type program,” he said.
Though the previous club was full of racers who wanted to go fast and increase their speed, Reynolds said this club is nothing like that.
“This is social rides, and if there’s a small group of people who want to go fast and furious, awesome,” he said. “You’ve got a committed time twice a week to meet as a group and do that.”
According to Reynolds, the main goal of the club is to get people outside being physically active and enjoying something he absolutely loves.