Vote for your Favorite Women’s Ride Jersey
Women’s rides are in a class of their own among cycling events. They are beginner friendly, supportive, and fun. Each ride has its own vibe, its own personality. Some offer perks like mini-spa stops, gourmet treats, volunteers that go above and beyond (guys in costume, or in drag), bands along the route and a few have themes that vary from year to year, The themes of the ride are often reflected in the custom jerseys offered for sale at the ride. The jerseys serve as a great keepsake reminder of a fun weekend with girlfriends or sisters. Later, when the jerseys are worn at another event, they become a point of conversation: “Where did you get that?” and that question is followed by others about the ride. I love seeing other women out and about wearing their commemorative jerseys. If it’s a ride I’ve been in, there’s an immediate connection: “Wasn’t that ride so fun last year? Are you going to do it again?”
Here are a few of our favorite rides and jerseys with a few comments about each. Which jersey designs are your favorite? Feel free to comment and vote for your favorite.
Cycle the WAVE in Issaquah, Washington
Cycle the WAVE’s all-women bike ride originates in Issaquah, Washington and the fourth annual ride will be held on Sunday, September 18, 2011. This event was created by women passionate about cycling, friendship, fitness, and the desire to “brake the cycle” of domestic violence and make a difference in their community. Cycle the WAVE offers three distances including the 25 mile Girly Girl, a fun ride through the rolling hills of Bellevue’s quiet neighborhoods and the 40 mile Middle Sister which offers a few more scenic miles. For the more experienced rider we offer the Burly Girl, a 62 mile metric century with beautiful scenery and challenging climbs! Cycle the WAVE loves its riders and will pamper you with well stocked rest stops, bike mechanic support, surprises along the way, sassy tees, girly gift bags and fun finish line festivities!
This event is hosted by Lakemont Ladies Cycling Club and Rising Star Guild for Eastside Domestic Violence Program and it is a true team effort to put on this fun ride and make it a unique cycling experience for women. The designers of this jersey, Deborah and Val had this to say about what inspired them:
“The design for this year’s jersey began in December…While shopping for decorations; I was inspired by these amazing green and pink ornaments. That was it! Fresh and feminine—it was the perfect color combination. Our desire was to create a jersey that felt more like a fun and cute top–not just another cycling jersey. After all, we do want to ‘Ride Like a Girl!’”
Girls Gone Riding Ride of Gilbert, ArizonaGirls Gone Riding began as a women’s team for the Arizona MS 150 bike ride. Because so many women wanted to prepare for the ride but were uncomfortable with group rides with testosterone-laden men, and because often women didn’t have anyone to mentor them, Sheryl Keene started a team to share what she knew about cycling and to make more riding friends. They had so much fun at the MS Ride, that it soon led to a fun all-women, fully-supported ride to raise money for charity, the Girls Gone Riding ride.
The 4th annual Girls Gone Riding was held on February 19, 2011 and the ride included a choice of four routes: a casual 15-mile jaunt, a 30-mile ride, a metric-century or a full 100-mile century. The finish line festival has great “girlie products” and vendors. Cyclists can choose among 5 charities to raise money for and the motivators include earning a pair of cycling socks for raising $100, and an official Girls Gone Riding jersey (for raising $250). Put this on your calendar for 2012!
About the 2011 GGR Jersey design: “We wanted to demonstrate power and a toughness while being colorful and incorporating the Girls Gone Riding logo or a strain of it. The feedback I received from women was that pink was too overdone and that orange and teal are optimistic colors. The stripe on the front had a ‘roller derby’ feel to it that we liked and the back is a take on the Arizona state flag.”
The Goldilocks Rides: Herriman, Utah, Las Vegas, Nevada AND Meridian, Idaho
The Goldilocks Ride was started as part of Herriman, Utah’s Pedal Palooza, a community bike event to promote health, fitness, fun and cycling safety. Dani Lassiter, the ride’s organizer, was inspired by the Little Red Riding Hood Ride and gave it a fairy-tale name in tribute. The theme worked very well as women were encouraged to choose a distance that was just right for them. For the 2011 Herriman ride, that includes a century ride as well. The ride has a bright and cheerful, fun atmosphere and Goldilocks was a hit and it sold out the first year. Dani was inspired to take the Goldilocks Ride across state lines and last fall came the debut Goldilocks Las Vegas, the first women’s only cycling event in Nevada. This year, Idaho will get in on the fun as Meridian will have its very own Goldilocks Ride as well.
The dates for the 2011 rides are:
- Butterfield Park, Herriman, Utah– Saturday, May 9, 2011
- Settlers’ Park, Meridian, Idaho–Saturday, July 9, 2011
- Rainbow Family Park, Las Vegas, Nevada–Saturday, October 22, 2011
The 2011 jersey has the familiar riding Goldilocks motif and the signature polka-dots. The jersey is offered in two color combinations: the pink and black (shown here) or a sleek steel-grey with jet-black trim. The pattern is the same.
Le Tour de Femme of Cary, North Carolina
Cary, North Carolina has a great women’s ride to raise community awareness and funding for cancer research and cancer survivorship programs. The ride has been dubbed “ Le Tour de Femme” and it offers a full metric century, half metric century and a fifteen mile “mother/daughter” bicycle ride and great refreshment s along the way and a fun post-ride celebration . One rider commented: “My favorite part of the entire ride…was the range of women involved: newbies, team riders, older women, young women, various fitness level, it was so cool to see! And having it as a “women’s only” ride was my second favorite thing – all women made it a ride, rather than a competition.”
The sixth annual Le Tour de Femme ride will be held on October 8, 2011, which is appropriately during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The jerseys are Nalini jerseys and 100% of the profits being divided between the Lance Armstrong Foundation and the Rex Hospital Angel Fund.
A carnation, is the symbolic flower for Le Tour de Femme. It provided a challenge for designer, Kim Massey, who wasn’t fond of carnations…at first!:
“It took a few days of just drawing carnations and trying to simplify them so they worked well in a logo. It was late at night when I ‘got it.’ I looked at the pink looped ribbon used to represent breast cancer and saw a petal shape for the carnation. I started to use that loop and connect them, the same way we are all connected in this fight against cancer. It formed a simple but beautiful carnation that seemed to have an energy all of its own and even a hint of a bike sprocket. Perfect.
“ As an all-girls ride, I wanted both to be all girl – no gender neutral here. It was fun and easy to design once I created the carnation mark. I just wanted to use that flower more and more, and the shirt and jersey were my canvas. I used the pink color pallet for the first jersey and flooded the shirt with flowers in all shapes and sizes. At the event, I watched the women start the ride, and it was beautiful. Here were a bunch of strong beautiful women riding for two incredible causes, and the jerseys made it look like the hard dark asphalt was taken over by a moving garden. Wow.
“That idea fueled the design for the years ahead. My goal? Totally transform the asphalt into a moving field of flowers. Each year the jersey is updated and the colors change, but they all work together and have a consistent feel, much like a field of flowers do. No matter if you wear a current year jersey or one from a previous year, each rider is part of the group. I encourage people to buy one and share their old one with a friend to encourage them to participate.
The small flower garden moving down the streets of Raleigh five years ago is now a huge field of flowers represented by a beautiful collection of women making a difference and it keeps growing. And, I can now report that carnations are my favorite flower!”
The Princess Promenade of Sacramento, California: the ”Road Trip Jersey”
The Princess Promenade is an event for women and girls along the beautiful American River Parkway bike trail in Discovery Park, Sacramento, California. There are 5 distances to choose from: 3, 15, 26, 55 or 64 miles. It is a fitness festival in a beautiful, green setting. Fittingly, a spread of delicious all natural foods will be provided for snacks and lunchtime. After the ride, there will be fashion shows featuring costumed cyclists: both children and women. This year, the ride will be held on Sunday, October 2, 2011. The ride will benefit several local community service groups including WEAVE, Girls on the Run of Greater Sacramento, CERT, Sacramento/Yolo Emergency Communications Services, Sacramento Food Bank, and helps support our state and county parks.
“This jersey was introduced for the 2nd annual Princess Promenade and has cocoa brown, raspberry, yellow gold, and local icons including California’s Capitol, Old Sacramento’s I Street Bridge and Folsom’s Rainbow Bridge. These jerseys look good and keep you comfortable!” says ride organizer Janae Noble. (This jersey, which is still available, is made from Airies Micro Plus by Voler for breathability and durability.)
Little Red Riding Hood Ride in Cache Valley, Utah
The Little Red Riding Hood Ride is now in its 24th year! This classic ride takes advantage of the rolling, rural topography of Cache Valley in northern Utah. This year’s ride will be on Saturday, June 4, 2011.
Little Red is hosted by the Bonneville Cycling Club. Proceeds from the LRRH ride go towards women-specific cancer research.
For the 3000 cyclists that take part, there are a variety of route distances to choose from: 17 to 100 miles. The century ride takes riders into south Idaho for a few miles. Little Red Riding Hood organizers have had fun with changing up the theme every few years and this year, the fun of the event centers around a “Fabulous 50′s” theme. This year’s jersey reflects the theme for 2011 with Little Red in a poodle skirt, the Big, Bad Wolf dressed as a “greaser” and bright and colorful argyle pattern.
Venus de Miles of Longmont, Colorado
Venus de Miles is celebrating their fourth year in 2011! This ride begins and ends in Longmont, Colorado on Sunday, August 28, 2011. With four different skill levels, novice and experienced cyclists can easily find the ride for them: from the 33-mile jaunt through the scenic countryside, the heart-pounding 51-mile ride, calf-cramping 67-mile ride, or the rolling 100-mile ride. The rest stops offer gourmet treats and local bands play music to keep you pumped and energized along the way. Funds raised go to support the Greenhouse Scholars,
The Venus de Miles jersey is a LUNA Sport jersey and the 2010 jersey was designed to be “elegant, beautiful and fun.” “Our riders rave about LUNA Sport’s fit – I like to say it fits like expensive lingerie,” says Teresa Robbins (the self-titled “Priestess” of the Venus de Miles.)
Which is your favorite jersey from these great women’s rides?