Cascade Bicycle Club

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Cascade Bicycle Club
Cascade Bicycle Club logo.svg
Formation 1970 (1970)
Type NGO
Legal status 501(c)(3)
Purpose Bicycling recreation, education and advocacy
Headquarters Seattle, Washington
  • 7787 62nd Ave. NE, Seattle WA
Coordinates 47°41'17.3"N 122°15'53.4"W
Region served
Washington State
Executive Director
Elizabeth Kiker
Commuter outreach booth
Helmet promotion event
The Cascade Bicycle Club training series

The Cascade Bicycle Club is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) community organization based in Seattle, Washington in the United States. It is the largest statewide bicycling nonprofit in the United States with more than 17,000 members. It is run by a volunteer board of directors, 36 professional staff and more than 1,000 volunteers.[1]


Cascade Bicycle Club was formed by Mike and Rick Quam in 1970. The membership fee was $2; meetings were at Luther Burbank Park on Mercer Island. The first newsletter, The Freewheeler, was produced that year. In 1972, Cascade began lobbying for Burke-Gilman Trail. In 1975, Cascade hosted the third annual Chilly Hilly ride on Bainbridge Island. In 1979, the club established the Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic. The next year, when the Eruption of Mount St. Helens canceled STP, it created a ride to Vancouver, B.C. - later renamed from STV to Ride from Seattle to Vancouver and Party. The 185-mile ride is limited to 900 riders.

In 1981, the club produced its first logo. The Bicycle Bill was passed by state legislature in 1983 to establish the bicycle's role as vehicle and cyclists' rights to the road. The first Seattle Bicycle Expo took place in 1987. While previously an all-volunteer club, a person was hired to direct the education committee. By 1990, the club moved into its first office, on Ravenna Boulevard, and took on a paid director.

In 1991, the Seattle to Portland ride had a record 10,000 participants. The club started producing the Flying Wheels Summer Century in 1993 and took over the Kitsap Color Classic in October 1994. By February 1995, the Bike Expo had its highest attendance at 12,871. In January 1999, Cascade moved to Warren G. Magnuson Park. That year, the Ride Around Washington began its inaugural tour. By 2000, the club turned toward becoming a professional organization, representing bicyclists to elected officials, community leaders and business owners.

In November 2014, Cascade moved their headquarters into the Cascade Bicycling Center, overlooking Lake Washington in Warren G. Magnuson Park.

In 2015, Cascade produced three new events: Ride for Major Taylor, Woodinville Wine Ride and Seattle Night Ride.

In January 2016, Cascade Bicycle Club and Washington Bikes merged to form the largest statewide bicycle nonprofit in the country.

In April 2016, Cascade Bicycle Club produced the Emerald City Bike Ride, the largest one-day ride in Washington state to date with 7,000 participants.

Major events[edit]

Cascade hosts several major riding events every year including Chilly Hilly, Seattle Bike-n-Brews, Ride for Major Taylor, Flying Wheels Summer Century, Woodinville Wine Ride, Seattle Night Ride, the Red-Bell 100, Seattle to Portland (STP), Ride from Seattle to Vancouver and Party (RSVP), Ride Around Washington (RAW), High Pass Challenge (HPC), and Kitsap Color Classic (KCC).

Cascade also organizes off-bike events including a Presentation & Film Series and the annual Bike Swap.

Rides and tours[edit]

Cascade volunteer ride leaders lead more than 2,000 free group rides a year. The club also leads regional tours. Cascade rides are open to anyone wearing a helmet.


In addition to producing material for the public on bicycling the Cascade Bicycle Club lobbies local government on behalf of people who ride bikes. Advocacy staff produced a paper titled "Left by the Side of the Road" asserting the shortfall of safe, effective bicycle routes in the region.

From 2009-2011 the club successfully lobbied for a law to increase penalties for negligent drivers who injured or killed vulnerable users of the road, including bicyclists and pedestrians. The club found that under state law, drivers were fined as low as $42. A version of the Vulnerable User Bill passed in 2011 with wide bipartisan support. The bill increased mandatory fines, but allowed the fines to be reduced by a judge, who could proscribe driver safety education and community service.

The Cascade Bicycle lobbies have petitioned for extending and building trails along the Burke-Gilman Trail through the industrial waterfront of Ballard. After local businesses obstructed progress of the project, the club joined the City of Seattle in a lawsuit to move trail construction forward.[2][3]


  1. ^ - retrieved 17 Jan, 2008
  2. ^ Emily Heffter. "Politics, friction reshape influential Cascade Bicycle Club". Seattle Times. Archived from the original on 2011-01-04. 
  3. ^ Bob Young. "A turf war over the Burke-Gilman Trail's missing link becomes a standoff". Seattle Times. Archived from the original on 2010-09-14. 

External links[edit]