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Fun and Quirky Bike Races
There are serious bike races and then there are quirky ones where the organizers display a serious amount of creativity and imagination to make their events fun for everyone. Here are six crazy races you can enjoy, whether you decide to register as a participant or just want to join in on the fun as a casual spectator:
July 4, 2017
Beaufort, North Carolina
Yes, you read that right. For this event, which is sponsored by Discovery Diving, entrants decorate their bikes, board the Outrageous V (or use their own boat) and head to the shipwreck site of the USS Indra. Then they don their scuba gear to get ready for the underwater race. Contestants may “swim, pedal, push or drag,” but only human power is allowed and only one biker is permitted per bike. All proceeds benefit the Children’s Mile of Hope in support of cancer research and prizes are given for the best dressed bike and rider.
July 21-22, 2017
This fun event, which is part of the Marymoor Grand Prix held at the Jerry Baker Memorial Velodrome, isn’t exactly a “race.” The riders have to go as slow as they possibly can without putting a foot down, grabbing the rail, riding off the track or falling, all of which will get them eliminated. Watching these expert racers do the opposite of what they’re used to doing is a great spectator sport, made all the better by the local food trucks and an adult beverage garden.
August 2, 2017
Warren County, New Jersey
This annual fundraiser for the Fred Grotenhuis Memorial Scholarships pairs each biker with a hot air balloon pilot at the Warren County Farmer’s Fair. The biker then climbs into the balloon’s basket and their bike is strapped to the side. Once they take off from the fairgrounds, the pilot has to fly past a boundary line designated on a map. Then the pilot lands the balloon, drops the biker off, and the biker has to race back to the fairgrounds from that point.
September 16, 2017
There’s nothing like having a valid reason to eat all the donuts you want. For this timed event, riders visit donut stops and eat donuts. Here’s the best part: For each donut the rider eats (and keeps down), five minutes is deducted from their ride time. Prizes are awarded in several categories, but the main prize is the coveted golden Tour de Donut championship belt which is awarded for the best “donut time.” And just so riders don’t miss any donut-eating opportunities by getting lost, the course is marked with large, donut-shaped markings – some even have sprinkles!
September 30, 2017
Grand Canyon to Williams, Arizona
This race starts at the Grand Hotel in Tusayan near the south rim of the Grand Canyon and travels 53 miles south to the finish line in Williams, Arizona on Historic Route 66. Here’s where the “man vs. machine” part comes in. Along the way, entrants will race against a 1923 300-ton steam engine traveling down the tracks of the Grand Canyon Railway which run parallel to the race course. Prizes are awarded to the top three finishers in both the men’s and women’s categories.
October 22, 2017
Key West, Florida
Leave it to a fun-loving place like Key West to host a zombie bike ride. The event takes place at sunset and attracts thousands of bikers who ride down US1 led by a police escort. But first things first. Zombie Land, which is located at the historic (and haunted) Fort East Martello, opens at 2 pm with live music, entertainment and vendors, including body and face painters who are ready, willing and able to turn bike riders into zombies. After the bike ride, the party continues with Zombie Fest on Key West’s legendary Duval Street with plenty of music and dancing in the street.