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  • Sat
    02
    May
    2020
    8:30 am - 5:00 pmThe Spoke & Bird - South Loop - 205 E 18th St.

    Illinois Steel Company
    Steelworkers Pilgrimage Cycling Tour

    Join Biketropolis on a full, immersive cycling tour and learn about and explore the life of steelworkers of the past around the Southeast Chicago area, with audio narratives provided by historian and author Rod Sellers, preservationist Paul Myers, and local South Chicago artist Roman Villarreal. First, ride south to Steelworkers Park to explore the Ore Wall archeological ruins of the U.S. Steel South Works and artifacts of the Acme Coke Plant. Then head over the Ewing Avenue bridge and pass by the smallest cemetery in Chicago housing the tomb of Andreas von Zirngibl, who helped defeat Napoleon in the Battle of Waterloo and lost an arm for the cause. Pedal over to Calumet Park and visit the James P. Fitzgibbons Historical Museum, which is chock-full of photos, memorabilia and antiques curated by the late Mr. Fitzgibbons, who was a steelworker from 1929 through the 60s and a founding member of the Southeast Chicago Historical Society. The next stop is the Illinois-Indiana state line obelisk, one of the oldest monuments in Chicago, located near the entrance of the preserved facade of the State Line power plant. On the next leg of the tour, you'll bike through Wolf Lake Memorial Park and witness the contrasting landscapes of industrialism and nature, then head down to the Marktown Historic District—once a master-planned steelworkers' factory town established in 1917. On the return trip, visit the Republic Steel Sculpture and Memorial Day Massacre site and the commemorative plaque honoring those who lost their lives during the struggle for steelworkers' rights. Throughout this tour, you'll find sculptures and monuments, along with several industrial bridges that were and still are instrumental arteries.

    What to Bring: reliable bike, lock, hydration, snacks, camera, cash for food, spare inner tube/patch kit, and binoculars (if you own a pair).

    Date: Saturday, May 2nd, 2020

    Time: 8:30 am to 5:00pm

    Cost: $35 (Includes donation to the James P. Fitzgibbons Memorial Museum)

    Registration Link: https://biketropolis.eventbrite.com

    Departure Location: The Spoke & Bird - South Loop - 205 E 18th St.

    Lunch: Comfort Roast Coffee House and Cafe - 1423 119th St, Whiting, IN 46394


    Distance: Approximately 40 Miles Round trip

    Average Speed: 10-12 MPH with rest stops planned along the way.

    Skill level: Moderate ride / No drop

    Gear: bike, lock, helmet, hydration, snacks and a camera

    Points of Interests include…

    The Spoke & Bird - South Loop - 205 E 18th St. (Start Location)

    South Shore Cultural Center

    Steel Garden Sculpture - Richard Hunt

    Steelworkers Park

    U.S. Steel South Works Plant Ore Walls

    A Tribute to the Past Monument - Roman Villarreal

    ACME Coke Plant Artifacts (1905)

    The South Works Deep Geological Study - Stella Brown

    Ewing Bridge (1914)

    Grave of Andreas Von Zirngibl (1797-1855)

    95th Street Bridge (1958)

    Calumet River Norfolk Southern Railroad Bridge (1912)

    PRR & NYC Lift Bridges over Calumet River

    East Chicago Steel Mills

    Southeast Chicago Historical Museum/James P. Fitzgibbons Historical Museum

    Illinois-Indiana State Line Boundary Marker Obelisk (1838)

    State Line Generating Plant Facade (1929)

    Wolf Lake Memorial Park

    Marktown Historic District (1917 - Present)
    Architect Howard Van Doren Shaw

    Republic Steel Monument/Memorial Day Massacre Monument

    South Shore Cultural Center

    The Spoke & Bird (End Location)

  • Sat
    06
    Jun
    2020
    8:00 am - 5:00 pmThe Spoke & Bird 205 - 209 E 18th St (18th & Indiana), Chicago, Illinois 60616


    Pedal to Pullman Cycling Adventure

    Join Biketropolis as we cycle back in time to visit one of the first prosperous factory towns in the United States. Founded by railroad car mogul George M. Pullman in 1880, the town of Pullman was built around his belief that human beings are deeply influenced by their environment. He thought his workforce would be more productive when housed nearby and surrounded by culture and beauty.

    We will meet at the Spoke & Bird and start off the tour in the Prairie Avenue District, where Pullman's massive family residence once stood. Our first stop will be the National A. Philip Randolph Pullman Porter Museum, located across from the site of the Pullman Wheelworks Factory. The museum named after the organizer and members of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, the first African-American labor union in the country to win a collective bargaining agreement against a corporate giant, the Pullman Palace Car Company.

    Next, we will bike to the Pullman Visitor Center and break for lunch. Afterward, we will watch a short movie to learn about local architecture and the early residents of this unique neighborhood once dubbed "the world's most perfect town." Before riding back downtown, we will pedal around the Pullman neighborhood visit key locations, search for remains of the Labor Paste work created by local artist JB Daniel,  roam some back alleys to find Ian Lantz's bedazzled garage doors and Nick Lubovich's & friends surprising art installations.

    Date: Saturday, June 6, 2020

    Time: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm

    Cost: $35 (includes museum admission).

    Registration link: https://biketropolis.eventbrite.com

    Departure location: Spoke & Bird (205 E 18th St, Chicago, IL 60616).

    Lunch options: The Pullman Cafe or One Eleven Food Hall. (Please bring debit/credit card, cash, or feel free to pack your own lunch and enjoy while relaxing at Arcade Park.)

    Total distance round-trip: 40 miles.

    Average speed: 10-12 mph with rest stops planned along the way.

    Skill level: Moderate ride/no drop.

    Gear: bike, lock, helmet, hydration, camera and snacks.

  • Sat
    13
    Jun
    2020
    8:30 AM - 4:00 pmJames R. Thompson Center1 - 00 West Randolph Street, Chicago, IL, 60601

    Preservation Chicago 7 Most Endangered Bicycle Tour

    Join Biketropolis and Preservation Chicago for a Biking Tour of the "Chicago 7 Most Endangered" Sites for 2020 and a few Chicago 7 sites from years past.

    Since 2003, Preservation Chicago has announced its annual "Chicago 7 Most Endangered" list to draw attention to important Chicago historic resources threatened by demolition due to development pressure, neglect, or a lack of resources. Once included as a Chicago 7, a historic building or resource remains an advocacy priority of Preservation Chicago for as many years as it takes for it to be saved or demolished.

    This tour is curated with Preservation Chicago's staff and Executive Director Ward Miller to give riders a first-hand account of why buildings are on the 2020 list and share some past Chicago 7 success stories and some tragic losses. We will ride through several different neighborhoods, have access to the interior of some of the sites, and learn about the historical and architectural importance of each location. Preservation Chicago has identified approximately 100 historic resources through its "Chicago 7 Most Endangered" program, enjoyed many wins, and suffered some tragic losses to Chicago's built environment. Enjoy biking through some of Chicago's diverse neighborhoods and learn more about the "Chicago 7 Most Endangered" program and efforts.

    What to Bring: reliable bike, lock, hydration, snacks, camera, cash for food, spare inner tube/patch kit, and binoculars (if you own a pair).

    Date: Saturday, June 13th, 2020

    Time: 8:30 am to 4:00pm

    Cost: $35 (Includes donation Preservation Chicago)

    Registration Link: https://biketropolis.eventbrite.com

    Departure Location: Thompson Center - 100 W Randolph Street, Chicago IL 60601 (Near The Monument with Standing Beast)

    Lunch: The Empanada Bike

    Distance: Approximately 25 Miles Round trip

    Average Speed: 10-12 MPH with rest stops planned along the way.

    Skill level: Moderate ride / No drop

    Gear: bike, lock, helmet, hydration, snacks and a camera

  • Sun
    28
    Jun
    2020
    9:30 am - 12:30 pmChicago History Museum - 1601 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL, 60614


    Chicago’s Fabulous Fountains Cycling Tour

    Join Biketropolis and one of Chicago’s top authors, Greg Borzo, as we tour the fabulous fountains decorating our vast city. Learn the history and architectural importance of these "water tossers"—often in plain sight but sometimes hidden within the jumble of skyscrapers, parks, museums and neighborhoods. We will pedal to a great number 25+ of Greg’s favorites from his 224-page book, Chicago’s Fabulous Fountains.

    Greg will also provide us with details about each fountain's history and significance, as well as stories about the water features that we walk and ride by every day.

    Date: Sunday, June 28th, 2020.

    Time: 9:30 am to 12:30 pm

    Cost: $35.

    Registration link: https://biketropolis.eventbrite.com

    Departure location: Chicago History Museum (in front of the fountain at North Avenue and Clark Street).

    Lunch: TBD which will be held after the end of the tour.

    Total distance round-trip: 25 miles.

    Average speed: 10-12 mph with rest stops planned along the way.

    Skill level: Moderate ride/no drop.

    Gear: Bike, lock, helmet, hydration, snacks and camera.

    Be sure to check out Greg Borzo’s latest book titled: Lost Restaurants of Chicago

  • Sat
    25
    Jul
    2020
    9:00am - 5:00 pmDaley Center 50 W Washington St, Chicago, Illinois 60602

    Schwinn Factory on Lake Street
    The History of Cycling in Chicago Tour

    Join Biketropolis, the Wheelmen and Chris McAuliffe, author of Cycling in Chicago (Images of America), as we pedal down memory lane to learn about our city's rich cycling history. We’ll start our journey at Daley Plaza, near locations where bicycling manufacturing once thrived, and discuss some of the top cycling events that took place in Chicago from the mid-1800s through the early 1900s. Throughout the tour, we will share and discuss vintage photos, product catalogs and brochures that help paint the picture of how popular cycling was during this time period. McAuliffe and Wheelmen member Carey Williams will share stories about this important time in history; and we will ride with Williams and his fellow Wheelmen, who will be on antique bicycles and dressed in period apparel. The carefully curated route will take us past the places where several prominent bike manufacturers and showrooms once stood, where indoor racing events took place, and along some of the routes of early outdoor-racing competitions.

    Date: Saturday, July 25th 2020

    Time: 9 am to 5 pm

    Cost: $35

    Registration Link: https://biketropolis.eventbrite.com

    Departure Location: Daley Plaza - 50 W Washington St, Chicago, IL 60602 (under the Picasso)

    Lunch: The Empanada Bike

    Total distance round-trip: 35 miles

    Average speed: 10-12 mph with rest stops planned along the way

    Skill level: Moderate ride/no drop.

    Gear: bike, lock, helmet, hydration, snacks and a camera.

  • Sun
    02
    Aug
    2020
    08:30 am - 5:00 pmDaley Plaza (Under the Picasso)

    Graffiti and Gears Cycling Tour

    Join Biketropolis and traverse the city by bicycle on this art tour highlighting Chicago's public murals, graffiti walls, and other street decorations. This year's tour will focus on the northside of Chicago, guest speakers will be announced in the coming weeks. Capping off our tour will be an opportunity to witness an organized graffiti competition at the Battle of the Eagle with our friend Flash (Artistic Bombing Crew & Classic Cruisers), curator of Project Logan.

    Date: Sunday, August 2nd, 2020

    Time: 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

    Cost: $35 (Includes a donation to West Town Bikes)

    Registration Link: https://biketropolis.eventbrite.com

    Departure Location: Daley Plaza (under the Picasso).

    Lunch: The Empanada Bike

    Distance:  35 miles

    Average speed: 10-12 mph with rest stops planned along the way

    Skill level: Moderate ride/no drop.

    Gear: bike, lock, helmet, hydration, snacks and a camera.

  • Sun
    25
    Oct
    2020
    9:00 am - 4:00 pmKwanusila Totem Pole - 3510 N Recreation Dr, Chicago, IL 606573510 N Recreation Dr, Chicago, IL, 60657


    The Historic Cemetery Cycling Tour

    Join Biketropolis and pedal through Graceland Cemetery and Rosehill Cemetery for a one of a kind tour and explore the history, architecture, landscaping, nature, and the wildlife. Graceland Cemetery was founded in 1860 and is the home of many architects and influential people that help build and shape Chicago. Along with its incredible design and architecture, Graceland Cemetery is also a certified arboretum and the home of vast wildlife. Rosehill Cemetery is an architectural wonder, the Gatehouse dates back to 1864 and was designed by famed architect William Boyington, who also designed the Chicago Water Tower, one of the city’s most recognizable historical landmarks. In 1975, the castle-like, Castellated Gothic arched entryway became a National Registered Historic Site. This tour also includes a visit to the Edgewater Historical Society. If time permits we will also ride through West Ridge Nature Preserve.

    Date: Sunday, October 25th

    Time: 9:00am to 4:00pm

    Cost: $25 (Includes a donation to the Edgewater Historical Society)

    Registration Link: https://biketropolis.eventbrite.com

    Departure Location: Kwanusila Totem Pole (3510 N Recreation Dr, Chicago, IL 60657)

    Lunch: First Slice Pie Shop (Andersonville Location) and The Empada Bike – (Bring Cash, Debit, or Credit Card for Lunch)

    Total Distance Round Trip: 20 Miles Round Trip

    Average Speed: 10 MPH with plenty of rest stops planned along the way.

    Skill level: Moderate ride / No drop

    Gear: bike, lock, helmet, hydration, snacks, sunscreen, smart phone or camera.