Kalamazoo Bike Month Offers Events for All Types of Riders in May

Published on May 08, 2024

May is Bike Month and there are fun and educational events planned in Kalamazoo to celebrate biking all month long:

  • Kalamazoo-Area Bike Week – Bike week starts May 11 and continues through May 18 with daily rides and bike related events. Full details can be found at www.kalamazoobikeweek.org  
  • Bicycle Show – The Bicycle Show will return to Bronson Park on Saturday, May 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event will feature cool vintage bikes, e-bikes, and other bicycling gear, along with food and live music. Community organizations will also be there to share information and resources about biking in the city. Full details can be found at www.kalamazoocity.org/BicycleShow
  • Bike Rodeo - At the Bike Rodeo on Wednesday, May 15, kids can learn how to bike safely and make sure their gear is fitted and in tip-top shape. This free event will run from 5 to 7 p.m. at Mayors’ Riverfront Park. There will be a bike-powered blender to make slushies and free helmets for kids who need one. Guests can RSVP early to be entered in a drawing to win a new bike at www.kzooparks.org/BikeRodeo 
  • National Bike to Work Week & Day – National Ride Your Bike to Work Week coincides with Kalamazoo-Area Bike Week, starting on Monday, May 13, and National Bike to Work Day is Friday, May 17.
  • Stuart Neighborhood Bike & Flower Day – The Stuart Neighborhood Association will be hosting a Bike and Flower Day with a variety of spring activities on Saturday, May 18 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. The event will take place near the Kalamazoo River Valley Trail (KRVT) at the northwest corner of Kalamazoo and Westnedge. Bike activities will include an unveiling of the new Dero Fixit bike station, bike mechanics on site to repair and tune up bikes, and bike decorating. Flower activities will include flower chalk art led by local artist, flower planting, and flowers for purchase.
  • Kalamazoo Commuter Challenge - The Kalamazoo Commuter Challenge is a two-week event (May 17th-30th) in which residents of Kalamazoo County are invited to ride their bicycles for any kind of trip – to work, shop, dine, or simply to enjoy cycling – in and around Kalamazoo, Portage, Vicksburg, Richland, or throughout the County. You can participate individually or create a team with people from your office, school, or any other organization. Riders are encouraged to connect and share their rides through an online platform called Love to Ride, which incentivizes and encourages bicycle riding by gamifying the user experience in challenges, community, and training. Users can log their routes and miles biked, share photos of their rides with other bicyclists, and get tips on riding. Routes logged will also show what routes riders are using most for future bike network planning.


Creating Safer Streets & a Connected Bike Network in Kalamazoo

In the past several years, Kalamazoo has been focused on making streets safer for everyone, whether driving, walking, or biking. Several projects have been completed to calm traffic all over the city like adding speed humps, making lanes consistent and appropriate widths, and improving signage, markings, and signals. These projects have been successful in reducing driver speeds nearer to the speed limits and have been a positive step to safer transportation.

Many of these projects have also left additional room on the roadway that has been used to expand Kalamazoo’s bike network. Westnedge, Park, Rose, Fulford, Michigan Ave, Stockbridge, Stadium are just a few of the streets that have had bike lanes added in the past few years. Together they are starting to create a more connected network of dedicated space for bicyclists and making it easier to get to more places. 

This year, bike lanes will also be added on Whites Rd when the street and utility work is completed. Pilot cycle tracks on Lovell St and Stadium Dr are expected to be installed in June and thanks to a Safe Streets for All grant, other protected features for bicyclists are planned to be piloted around the city.

The Kalamazoo River Valley Trail (KRVT) route through downtown will change this May through Summer 2026 to use the two-way cycle track on Michigan Ave and detour around planned construction. In some areas it will share low-traffic roads, and higher-traffic areas will have additional protection and changes for a more comfortable ride. Signage will be installed to direct riders along the updated route.

A pilot Bike Corral has also been added downtown as a new option for bike parking. The corral offers 10 parking spaces for bikes in the place of one car parking space. It will move to different locations downtown to help determine where new permanent bike parking would be most useful. More information and locations are available at www.kalamazoocity.org/BikeCorral

“The future is looking bright for bicycling in Kalamazoo, and more people biking is even good for drivers too. It means less vehicle traffic on the road, easier parking, and less pollution. Studies have also shown that increased biking can be good for local businesses and provides other economic and health benefits to the community,” said George Waring, Senior Civil Engineer. “Whether you’re an experienced bicyclist, casual commuter, or just starting out and learning to ride, we hope you’ll join us in celebrating biking in Kalamazoo throughout the month of May.”

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