Ride of Silence



Ride Of Silence organizers and volunteers,

Welcome to the 10th year since The Ride Of Silence first rode. The history of that first gathering in Dallas, TX, has become almost mythical, as I am asked to re-tell the story many times over. I don’t mind, one syllable.

A ride or event, of this nature or scope had never taken place before. Not one of us knew what would follow, how it would impact cyclists, or just the term, “Ride Of Silence” would become well known in its own. After it was given birth, the ride seemed to take on a life of its own. We merely guided its energy as it exploded around the globe. It’s been amazing to see and be a part.

I appreciate those who have manned the helm year after year because your consistent message has continued undeterred. You must realize each year you host this ride, there is someone hearing our messages for the first time, …and statistics tell us, someone is hearing it for the last time. Keep up the consistency. Our purpose is noble, our cause is just. The Ride of Silence is an event worth continuing and protecting.

As for those of you who are just coming aboard, I welcome your passion. Something ignited deep inside you that made you want to do something, to become involved. Hold on to that reason because it will inspire when the work is long or hard or frustrating. We that have done this year after year, realize we are many times embarking on new ground for city offices and government officials. Use that enthusiasm and passion, or maybe a person’s name who you knew was killed by a motorist, that gave you a reason to start.

For all of you, let me tell about what’s new on the Organizer Resources page of The Ride Of Silence web site. Each year we try to make it easier for you to host a ride.

First, note because The Ride Of Silence is world wide, there are different languages on the web site to assist you and in getting the word out. If you don’t find your language, submit it, and we’ll post it.

Second, we’re close to finalizing a special anniversary Ride Of Silence bike shirt. This will be a limited run of maybe only 100. Elizabeth Adamczyk from Chicago, our newest board member, is heading this up. Be on the watch when this becomes available. As I said, there might not even be 100 of these made. When they’re gone, they are gone.

Next, the new poster for this year (courtesy of Mark Hagar, RoS Vice President, Mich. coordinator) is on the web site to help you publicize your ride. Along with it is a handout or flyer. You can download both.

An Organizer Checklist is also new! Use this handy checklist to help you better prepare and organize your event. (courtesy of Elizabeth Adamczyk, Chicago Organizer, RoS Board member) The Safe Riding Rules Handout template (courtesy of Mallory Hicks in memory of sister Paige Hicks) makes a good companion to the checklist, or the "Road Rules: Eight Tips For Safer Cycling", provided courtesy of Brushy Mountain Cyclists Club, provide useful information that you can hand out to your riders and promote safe cycling practices.

In an attempt to make letting us know how many riders you had for your event (an important piece of information when talking to the media), please check out the new Event Reporting Form. We encourage you to use this to report event details, upload photos, links to articles, etc. NOTE: DO NOT include a comma when inputting the number of participants (if you had more than 999 riders).

There’s also How to organize a Ride of Silence™ (General information and tips), a press release to get the word out to your local media (examples are provided), a Sample State Resolution (Approach your state's bicycling coalition or League office and ask for a resolution like this - thank you North Carolina!), a list of web sites where you can submit the details of your local Ride of Silence and get the word out, a Memoriam Powerpoint slideshow (web browser viewable - best viewed with Internet Explorer; show before or after rides, or during stationary group rides, and a YouTube Public Service Announcement produced by Michael Friedoff. (He has filmed the Dallas ride over the years but very few had seen his clips. He put this 30 second PSA together to be aired anywhere and everywhere.)

Other resources to help you and your ride is our Mentor Program for new locations or new site directors who have questions about starting a RIDE OF SILENCE in their community. Contact: Mark Hagar - our Michigan director who has helped make Mich. the state with the most RoS events for several years running, or Benoit Valin - International, English or French (Benoit is our Singapore organizer whose event drew almost 500 participants in 2009, his first year as organizer!).
Also on the site are copies of “Ride of Silence.” “Share the Road Same Road,” and “Same Rules” small signs you can use to laminate and pin or zip-tie to panniers, jerseys, etc.), as well as banners - 2 different sizes with RoS inspired messages were designed to be mounted to large boards mounted to bike-trailers, adapted from the design below by Tim Potter, E. Lansing, MI organizer (2010).
Last, there are mapping tools, logos, and a Ride Of Silence disclaimer form. As you can see that’s quite a lot that’s there for you.

I want to thank those who came out to The National Bike Summit in Washington, DC, March 20-23. Louis Vivanco, Burlington, VT; Steven Hardy-Braz, Farmville, NC, Tim Blumenthal, Bikes Belong; Aaron Chang, Houston, TX; Lyndsay McKeever, Blacksburg, VA; Celeste Burr, Marietta, GA, Jennifer Buntz, Santa Fe, NM; and Vincent Cooke, Ownings Mills, MD.

Congratulations on inspiring so many people, and getting the message out to others who probably were hearing this for the first time. It was inspiring to meet some of the ride directors, to hear their stories, and successes with the ride.

This is an important date for your community. Cherish it. Through its people, your town has taken a giant step in the right direction toward cyclist safety.

As you probably do, we see this as a very significant event, if only because it is held world wide on the same day, at the same time. But more so, because it remembers those lost doing what is a legal right.

Again, thank you for being part of this world wide event. It is appreciated. Thank you for your passion. I look forward to partnering with each of you as we continue the tradition of excellence that distinguishes The Ride Of Silence, and as together, we envision the path for the future. Our purpose is noble, our cause is just. The Ride of Silence is an event worth protecting.

Through the web site, be sure to let us know how it goes, especially how many people attend. (Send reports to: http://www.rideofsilence.org/reports/)

Thank you!

40 Days to go!

Chris Phelan, Founder
The Ride Of Silence
On Twitter: @RideofSilence
Wednesday, May 16, 2012, 7 PM
We all ride. Now we can ride as one.
One day. One time. One world, world wide.
Let the silence roar.

The 2011 Ride Of Silence
322 locations world wide
50 U.S. states
24 Countries
7 continents
0 words spoken
A million powerful memories.

Photosby Tim Potter: Chris Phelan navigates Washington DC, March 30; meeting other RofS ride directors and cool people at the National Bike Summit: Jennifer Buntz, NM; Ann Swain, Wash DC; Vincent Cook, Owings Mills, MD; RofS Founder; Elizabeth Adamczyk, Board Member, Chicago;