Ride in the Rain Toolkit
Use the Washington Bikes Ride in the Rain Challenge to encourage bicycling at your workplace or in your social circle
Now is a great time to promote bicycling and the best time for beginners to get started biking. Leverage the 2021 Washington Bikes Ride in the Rain Challenge on the Love To Ride platform to increase bicycling to and from your workplace and generate momentum for onsite bicycle infrastructure improvements. It’s also a great way to engage friends and family in an activity that provides mental and physical benefits.
Whether you are a Team Captain, a team member, or a workplace events coordinator, you’ll find that the toolkit below is a great springboard for making the Ride in the Rain Challenge a rewarding and unique experience.
Suggested to-do list
This sample timeline will help you plan for a fantastic challenge and inspire riders.
- Set a goal for your workplace (number of teams, new riders, trips), and offer incentives for people who recruit new people to ride.
- Recruit your CEO or a high-profile leader to participate in bicycling activities. Organize a fun ‘Ride with your CEO’ bike ride.
- Plan workplace Ride in the Rain activities:
- A bike commuting roundtable lunch where regular riders share tips and routes with the bike-curious.
- Organize an early November kick-off party or breakfast and an end-of-the-month awards ceremony.
Friends & Family Recruitment
- Set goals with family and friends. Set different kinds of goals: experiential goals, mileage goals, personal best goals, etc. Do you want to climb the leaderboard or focus on fun and quality time?
- Set expectations based on goals. Will you track progress? Ask for weekly report backs? Make sure the team is in alignment.
- Organize a virtual kick-off party before November 1. Share your favorite recipes for hot drinks during and after rides, your favorite routes, and do some group stretches.
- Create your own Bike Bingo card to encourage your team to get out in fun, meaningful ways.
- The point structure for 2021 is as follows:
- For every day you ride, you get 10 points. This is associated with your first ride of the day.
- For every mile you ride, you get 1 point.
- What does this mean for your team? You’ll have to anticipate your strengths and weaknesses if you plan to ascend the leaderboard.
- A team is greater than the sum of its parts! Team Captains may want to delegate tasks to teammates: route planning, cheerleading, setting mini-challenges, creating polls, setting up group chats, tracking stats, etc.
- Update internal website with bike commuting information and resources.
- Promote the November 1-30 Washington Bikes Ride in the Rain Challenge to your networks.
- Tell *your* story. Why you bike, the benefits of bicycling (mental, physical, social, financial, environmental), and why you’d like others to join you.
- Challenge your employees using sample recruitment email below. Registration for the Challenge opens November 1.
- Offer incentives (like a gift card) to team captains for starting a team and recruiting people to ride.
- Reinforce desired behavior by recognizing and rewarding new commuters!
- Invite mechanics from a local bike shop or Mobile Bike Rescue to come to your worksite and get your employees’ bikes in shape.
- Even better: offer to subsidize bike tune-ups for your employees!
- Go anywhere by bike! The 2021 Ride in the Rain Challenge starts on November 1 – and goes all month long!
- Create a group chat and share photos from your rides. It’s a great way to check in and maintain interest.
- Feature bike commuters in your blog or newsletter, especially a team captain or new rider who are especially inspiring.
- Promote existing bike events and free group rides from our friends at Cascade Bicycle Club. Check out the Cascade calendar for dates.
- Celebrate your organization or team’s efforts by organizing a fun awards ceremony or bike commuter breakfast.
- Share results and success stories with senior leadership and in your internal communications.
- Poll participants for suggestions to increase bike commuting at your business.
- Make strategic enhancements for bike commuting.
Inspire your employees
New bike commuters respond to support, encouragement and incentives. Below is a list of suggestions to guide your challenge planning.
- Host a riding class for new commuters.
- Submit a compelling video about bicycling at your workplace.
- Propose theme days (lycra, business suits, tutus, super heroes, tweeds, etc).
- Organize free food for bicyclists (breakfast, lunch, or happy hour).
- Use your ride-matching skills to pair new bike commuters with experienced riders.
- Raffle off fabulous prizes.
- Get your CEO to participate – organize a CEO ride to your workplace!
- Stage a bicycle fashion show (demonstrate that bicycling is a diverse activity with lots of different purposes).
- Share inspiring stories via company newsletter, intranet, or blog.
Feel free to use these templates to promote the 2021 Washington Bikes Ride in the Rain Challenge via email, online, or newsletters. Registration for the Challenge is free and opens in November.
To recruit captains
Ride in the Rain Month is coming up and __________ (organization) will be participating in the 2021 Washington Bikes Ride in the Rain Challenge. I’d like to encourage you to join the all-star cast of team captains.
As a team captain, you can significantly increase bicycle commuting at _________ (worksite). And we’ll be backing you up with some fun events and incentives, including:
The challenge offers up great support for captains, including a comprehensive toolkit, and prizes just for captains.
To start a team, you simply sign up online, recruit three or more coworkers to join your team, and encourage them to ride as much as possible throughout the month. The challenge starts November 1; please start your team today!
________(your name, title, department, contact information)
To encourage executive support
Dear __________ (title)
I would like to encourage ___________________(business) to participate in the 2021 Ride in the Rain Challenge. Bicycle commuting makes great business sense. Bike commuters are healthier and more productive employees. Bicycle parking is a fraction of the cost and space of car parking. Bike commuting is especially valuable to me as an employee because _____________________.
The 2021 Ride in the Rain Challenge is a simple turn-key program that has significantly increased bicycle commuting among both new and experienced riders. Last year, 10 percent of participants were brand new commuters. That’s an impressive result.
What’s more, it’s very simple for businesses to participate. Team captains like me recruit and encourage riders. The riders track their own trips online. Washington Bikes provides a comprehensive business toolkit with email templates, newsletter blurbs, graphics, and inspiration.
Captain ________(your name)