You Are Invited to the Biggest Bicycle Travel Celebration Since Bikecentennial 76

October 19, 2015

If craft breweries, a robust trail system, and unique ice cream flavors, like yellow cake and huckleberry, weren’t enough to make you want to visit the home of Adventure Cycling, there’s now an even bigger reason to visit this special place we call home.

Montana Bicycle Celebration
Bikecentennial 76 cyclists Bill and Barb Samsoe enjoy a beer at Draught Works
Brewery with Adventure Cycling staff members Brian Bonham and Cassie Nelson.

Missoula and the nearby Bitterroot valley will host the Montana Bicycle Celebration on July 15—17, 2016. The weekend event will be the biggest bicycle travel celebration since Bikecentennial in 1976. And Bikecentennial is precisely the reason we’re celebrating. The summer of 2016 will mark 40 years since the inaugural ride across the TransAmerica Trail that transformed the lives of over 4,000 participants and laid the organizational foundation for Adventure Cycling Association.

Montana Bicycle Celebration
Franziska Mattner, a student from Germany who spent the summer of 2015
writing her thesis about bicycle tourism at the Adventure Cycling office,
and staff member Eva Dunn-Froebig ride the beautiful Bitterroot Trail.

Many of the original Bikecentennial cyclists from 1976 will participate in the festivities, including Bikecentennial co-founders Greg and June Siple and Dan and Lys Burden. But the celebration won’t just be for Bikecentennial cyclists. There will be activities for people of all ages from young families to seasoned riders. This jam-packed weekend will include parties, speakers, music, art, film, a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the newly minted Missoula to Lolo Trail, bike rides along the heralded Bitterroot Trail, and Bikecentennial 76 reunions. Sunday Streets and BIKEapalooza, a community bike ride around Missoula, will round out the celebratory weekend. 

Montana Bicycle Celebration
 On July 17, Sunday Streets Missoula, a party on Missoula’s main drag, will include activities and bike rides for people of all ages on closed streets.

All of the events are free with the exception of two evening events: a Friday night, July 15, reception with hors d’oeuvres, film, music, and the Bikecentennial co-founders and a dinner with inspiring speakers on Saturday, July 16. Only 500 tickets are available for these two events, so secure your tickets to get the early-bird price of $76.

Montana Bicycle Celebration
Cassie Nelson and Brian Bonham pose in front of the Shady Spruce Hostel in Missoula. 

It’s not too early to make your travel plans and reserve your accommodations, either. You may even decide to combine the weekend celebration with an Adventure Cycling tour or plan a DIY adventure using Adventure Cycling’s maps.

If you’ve ever wanted to visit Montana, this is your chance to be part of the biggest bicycle celebration in 40 years. We look forward to meeting you in the summer of 2016!

Photos by Saara Snow

Celebrate the 40th anniversary of Adventure Cycling Association with Bike Your Park Day on September 24. Ride to or within your favorite parks and public lands with thousands of other throughout the country on the same day. Register at 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.



Jana Seeliger October 22, 2015, 8:42 AM

I was reminiscing about riding my bike from Victoria, BC to Colorado starting with the ferry to Seattle in 1976. What a great ride. The roads were in such great shape for the BikeCentennial.

Maureen Callanan Neumann October 20, 2015, 5:53 PM

Great article, great photos! :)

Jean Belangie-Nye October 20, 2015, 2:14 PM

Come ride the great trails! Missoula to Hamilton, the Hiawatha, and mountain biking trails in every canyon!

Nate October 19, 2015, 4:24 PM

You mean we have to wait until the summer?

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