First started by New York City bike messengers in 1999, the Cranksgiving tradition has spread across the country, with events held in Los Angeles, Chicago, St. Louis, Madison, Des Moines, and now Fort Atkinson.
What happens at a Cranksgiving ride is cyclists gather at a designated start point where they are given a shopping list of specific items needed by a local food pantry, plus a map of stores along a specific route from which to buy these items.
Off they go in a race (or fun, relaxed ride) to purchase the items and bring them back. Riders purchase the items themselves, which is where the charity part comes in, and have to be prepared to carry them back.
A typical shopping list will have a dozen or two items, and maybe set back the riders $10-20. It’s a terrific way to kick off the holiday season and be out on your bike, doing something good with the community alongside your fellow cyclists. Plus, it’s an early start on burning off all the calories you’ll be inhaling during November and December.
The 2013 Charities that will be benefiting from Cranksgiving are:
Come out and ride for a great cause!