Who Will Attend the Montana Bicycle Celebration?

April 4, 2016

Bikecentennial cyclists Bill and Barb Samsoe and Adventure Cycling staff members Cassie Nelson and Brian Bonham enjoy a microbrew at Draught Works Brewery, one of the many breweries in Missoula and the Bitterroot Valley.

The Montana Bicycle Celebration, Adventure Cycling’s 40th anniversary celebration, is less than four months away and already hundreds of people from all over the world have made plans to attend. Most of the Montana Bicycle Celebration activities and events are free, but attendees must purchase tickets to two of the Montana Bicycle Celebration events: the reception on Friday, July 15 and the dinner on Saturday, July 16. More than half of the 500 tickets available for these two events have already sold, giving us a good idea of who is attending. 

We know that almost 90% are coming from outside of Adventure Cycling’s home state of Montana and more than 7% are traveling from outside of the United States,

  • Representing eight countries, including the United States, Australia, Canada, China, Japan, Oman, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.
  • And 36 states, Washington D.C., and Puerto Rico.

Bikecentennial cyclists Barb and Bill Samsoe at the Shady Spruce Hostel in Missoula,
one of the many types of accommodations in Missoula. 

Almost half of the people who plan to attend the Montana Bicycle Celebration had a role in Bikecentennial, the 4,250-mile bicycle ride on the TransAmerica Trail in the summer 1976, which we’re celebrating in July. Attendees with Bikecentennial ties include original staff members, volunteers, leaders and co-leaders, and, of course, Bikecentennial cyclists from the throng of 4,100 riders who rode in 1976.

More than half of the Montana Bicycle Celebration attendees are Adventure Cycling members and 15% are Life Members

The Montana Bicycle Celebration weekend includes bike rides, social events,
and other activities for people of all ages.

Many attendees are bringing spouses, children, grandchildren, and friends to enjoy the weekend activities, including social events with music, art, film, and inspiring speakers, as well as organized bike rides with varying distances on the newly minted Bitterroot Trail, a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the new trail, and a bicycle expo.

The Montana Bicycle Celebration schedule has expanded to accommodate out-of-town guests who plan to stay in western Montana for more than just the weekend celebration. (Some people will be here for a full week and even up to a month!) The schedule now includes opportunities to go on rafting trips, additional bike rides in Missoula and on the nearby Hiawatha Trail, Sunday Streets Missoula, and other free programs and presentations.

Many attendees are already making travel plans and reserving accommodations, from campsites to University of Montana guest housing and motels or hotels.

An organized bike ride of varying distances and optional shuttles on the
newly-minted Bitterroot Trail is one of the highlights of the Montana Bicycle Celebration on Saturday, July 16.

Some attendees are also combining travel to the Montana Bicycle Celebration to include an Adventure Cycling tour or a DIY adventure using Adventure Cycling’s maps.

Still others are gathering with Bikecentennial friends or other riding buddies and will hold a reunion in conjunction with the Montana Bicycle Celebration.

View a list of attendees to see for yourself who has already purchased tickets to the Montana Bicycle Celebration reception (Friday, July 15, 4:30 p.m.) and dinner (Saturday, July 16, 5:30 p.m.). Don’t delay! Purchase your tickets if you haven’t already — ticket prices increase on May 1 and there are only 500 available.

Photos 1 and 2 by Saara Snow | Photo 3 by Meg Whicher | Photo 4 by John Sieber.


40th Blue Length wise.jpg

Adventure Cycling celebrated its 40th anniversary all year with National Bike Travel Weekend, the Montana Bicycle Celebration, and Bike Your Park Day. Look for National Bike Travel Weekend and Bike Your Park Day in 2017. Thank you to the 40th anniversary sponsors: Raleigh BicyclesMontana Department of CommerceSalsa CyclesAdvocate CyclesBlue Cross Blue Shield of MontanaPrimal WearVisit MississippiVisit IdahoTravel OregonOsprey PacksExperience Plus!Destination Missoula and Missoulian.

Find out more about Adventure Cycling’s generous sponsors.



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