Velo De Femmes 2024

By Ilona Miller updated 2024-05-21

The Westchester Cycle Club is hosting its second annual  Velo de Femmes  on Saturday, June 1, to build community among all levels of female cycling enthusiasts.

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The event  starts in Armonk and is geared toward encouraging more women to participate in recreational cycling. "We want women to know that there's a connection out there for those who are interested in riding" said Christine Schopen, immediate past-president of the WCC, whose almost 800 members are about one-third female.

Rides of 14, 30 and 50 miles are free to join, and participants are encouraged to stick around afterward to socialize and enjoy a catered lunch of wraps, salads and beverages supplied by DeCiccio's for a $23 fee. All participants will get a free membership in the Westchester Cycle Club for the rest of the year. Ride leaders will be doing a pre-ride clinic for all riders who haven't experienced group riding in the past.  

Velo de Femmes, which roughly translates to a women's bike ride, offers a chance to make new friends and learn about cycling while touring some of the area's quiet, scenic roads. All the rides will be "no-drop," meaning no one will be left behind, and groups may be split into faster/slower speeds to make sure everyone's riding at a comfortable pace.

Riding in all-male groups can be intimidating for some women. Last year's inaugural Velo de Femmes drew more than 175 women of all ages and riding capabilities . We saw, firsthand, that when women riders feel comfortable, they are more likely to come out, ride,  and socialize with other like-minded or like-skilled women.  "I started with the WCC club as a new rider many years ago, says longtime club member Amy Goldman. " I had never ridden in a group, but taking that first step is so important, and now I regularly lead WCC club rides," Says Goldman.  

"Velo de Femmes was the first time that I experienced the thrill of riding paceline with an all women's group - what an amazing feeling!" said Jess Rieder, a WCC member. Another longtime WCC member, Beverly Thornhill, said "riding has really been life-changing for me - some of my closest friends now are the women that I ride with either locally or on bicycling vacations." Ride leader, Ilona Miller, says, "What I love about WCC is that you can be as competitive or as social a rider as you want. For me, it was meeting Bruce Wells who took me from C to A level within 2 years, he also introduced me to some of the best riders in the area."

The Westchester Cycle Club is a not-for-profit organization whose purpose is to educate the public about safety and the benefits of bicycle riding, promote awareness and enjoyment of cycling through organized events, tours, lectures and demonstrations, and to promote bicycle use as a non-polluting, non-congesting, quiet means of recreation and transportation. 

If this is your first ride with WCC, please join us! Rides will begin at Armonk Sports Center, located at 205 Business Park Drive in Armonk's Community Park, which is at the intersection of Route 22 and I-684, Exit 3. Due to heavy usage of the Sports Center on Saturdays, please park at 130 Business Park Drive in the rear parking lot, then ride to the Sports Center.  Please do not park in spaces designated for the Physical Therapy Establishment, or near their front entrance.

You do not need to be a member to sign up for this ride, so bring your friends!

Riders must sign up in advance, be at least 18 years of age, wear a helmet and arrive with a bicycle in good working condition. There will be staggered start times so that we can all arrive back for lunch around the same time. Please be checked in and with your group no later than 30min prior to your start time. When you check in, you will need to sign a waiver or you will not be allowed to ride. You will also know your ride leaders when you check in. 

50mi start time: 9:30am (https://ridewithgps.com/routes/42488981) 

30mi start time: 10:30am (https://ridewithgps.com/routes/43006086) 

14mi start time: 11am (https://ridewithgps.com/trips/120199753) 

Depending on how many sign up, each group may be split into faster/slower speeds to keep it fun.  You can select your route and pace when you sign up, but feel free to do any route or speed depending on how you feel on the day.

Additional Questions? Email: velodefemmes@westchestercycleclub.org

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© Westchester Cycle Club 2024