Founded in 2012, BikeMaine is organized by the Bicycle Coalition of Maine, an advocacy group that has led the effort to make Maine better for biking and walking since 1992. BikeMaine was founded to promote the state as a bicycling destination and to use cycling as an economic development tool for local communities. The inaugural BikeMaine event was held in September 2013 and attracted 251 riders from 37 states and Canadian provinces and generated an estimated $235,000 in direct economic impact.
Wherever possible, purchased resources required for riders are Maine-sourced within host communities or businesses along the route. The economic boost to host community businesses and community organizations from riders, volunteers, and family members can be significant, as are the continuing benefits from increased community visibility. In 2016, BikeMaine’s total direct economic impact from the event to date grew to an estimated $1.7 million. Proceeds from the event support the Bicycle Coalition of Maine and its local cycling and pedestrian initiatives.
Following the completion of BikeMaine’s three-year start-up phase, BikeMaine awarded a grant to the City of Gardiner, a 2014 BikeMaine host community, in the amount of $12,300 to be used to spur local investment to complete a connector trail from downtown Gardiner to the Kennebec River Trail.
BikeMaine is hosted by the Bicycle Coalition of Maine, and operates under the direction of a Ride Director and volunteer Ride Committee. Most importantly, it is fueled by an army of volunteers, many from host communities and communities interested in becoming host communities in the future. You can learn more about the Bicycle Coalition of Maine, staff, and staff support here. If you’d like to learn more about becoming a volunteer, please click here.
Event Director, Zach Schmesser
Zach came to Maine to attend college and graduate school and decided to stay. Zach started with the Coalition as the Event Coordinator in April 2013, just prior to the Inaugural Ride. Since then he has enjoyed developing systems and strategies to set-up, take-down and move the BikeMaine rolling village. In October 2015, he transitioned into the role of Event Director.
Event Manager, Rob Mueller
Rob is passionate about getting everyone active through the creation of inclusive events. He has spent over 20 years working in adaptive sports programs from Alaska to Argentina and was most recently training and education manager with Disabled Sports USA outside Washington D.C. Cycling and walking have played a huge part in his life and he is excited to support the mission of the Bicycle Coalition of Maine through managing the Great Maine Bike Swap, Maine Women’s Ride, Maine Lobster Ride and BikeMaine. In his free time, he can be found teaching his daughters about the world through travel, cooking and playing outside.
Volunteer Coordinator, Liz Hall
Liz is the Bicycle Coalition of Maine’s development director, and has the honor of serving as the volunteer coordinator for the BikeMaine ride each year! Liz hails originally from Vermont, and after a stint in Washington, DC, has loved settling into her new home in Maine and discovering so many amazing places to ride and people to befriend throughout the state. During BikeMaine, you’ll find Liz dancing around BikeMaine Village, lending a hand wherever needed, and working to make BikeMaine the best volunteer experience imaginable for our amazing volunteers!
The Board of the Bicycle Coalition of Maine appointed Coalition members to serve on the BikeMaine Ride Committee, which began meeting in December 2011.
Ride Committee Members include:
- Tina West, Chair: Yarmouth
- Jeff White, Vice Chair: Cape Elizabeth
- Aaron Bishop, Treasurer: Falmouth
- Pam Fischer: New Gloucester
- Phil Coffin: Portland
- Nancy Grant: Bicycle Coalition of Maine Executive Director
- Justin Ladd: Scarborough
- Rick McGinley: Falmouth
- Cindy Orcutt: Kingfield
- Jeanne Peckiconis: Kennebunk
- Larry Rubinstein: Scarborough