FEBRUARY — 2020 

Potomac Pedalers Calendar of Events

by Anne C. M. Hyman — President PPTC

Happy February, Pedalers!

I’m here to deliver a message of love to all of you this month, and not just because it’s Valentine’s Day soon (“hey Siri, set a reminder to buy some chocolate for my spouse…”). I spent a lot of time this past month talking with our members at our ExCom happy hour, coming together to celebrate the lives of dearly departed PPTC members, and celebrating our amazing volunteers this past weekend at our annual Volunteer Appreciation Event. I am so grateful that so many PPTC members came out to not just share a drink and a story, but to share the club’s history and their views on the future of Potomac Pedalers.
Our happy hour at Caboose Tavern in Vienna ended up being a harmonic balance between productive and social, with several members joining us to discuss current challenges we face in entrenching ourself in the 21st century forms of communication and administration. Everyone who came out brought some great ideas that the ExCom is exploring further. We also had a toast to Bob Sheldon, a long-time PPTC member who passed away last month. Several current members attended his memorial service and the club honored him at our events with a toast, which seemed fitting for Bob. Everyone who spoke of him all shared one sentiment, that he had an abundance of love and joy of life. May we all be so lucky to be remembered in that light.
We had a wonderful turnout at our Volunteer Appreciation Event. I am so grateful that previously as VP of Special Events and now President, I am able to spoil our members with a formal invitation event, with dinner and beverages on us. I was able to see so many familiar faces, and finally meet with some incredible people I have heard so much about over the years. It was also my great honor to present four awards to incredibly deserving volunteers this year. It’s always a joyful burden to have to read through SO many nominations for our awards, and debate the merits of each with the Executive Committee, because many of you have done and continue to do so much for our club. The criteria I set for the ExCom in our discussion for awarding the recipients were as follows:
  1. The person providing the nomination must include a reason for the nominee’s deserving of the award (and trust me, there were MANY good ones)
  2. The award winner received multiple nominations of this degree (again, there were MANY)
  3. Thinking about the winners in the context of the PPTC as we see it- did the volunteer embrace the spirit of the club’s past to act through the present, and inspire the future?
And the four winners had, did, and do, exactly that…
Jeff Mankie won the Peter LeGrand Good Shepherd Award for Ride Leader of the Year. He was nominated by several of his bi-weekly riders, for always being a welcoming leader to familiar faces and new riders. He won because of the compelling reasons that he is an exemplar of group riding safety, and has helped de-escalate situations involving aggressive motorists this past year. Thank you, Jeff, for your continued leadership of the Mason Neck and Lorton Springfield Sunday rides!
Butch Counts and Deb Reynolds won the award for hosting the Best Original Ride. Their work, along with Doug Lesar and Tom Fedewa to put the Shenandoah weekend back on the calendar with revamped rides, activities, and venues for the weekend truly made their event Special. We’re looking forward to this year’s Shenandoah weekend in July!
Beth Merricks was awarded the Neal D. Molloy Volunteer of the Year award, for her stalwart leadership of our messaging committee. Many of you may not realize what an important job our messaging committee has, as our club’s liaison between the public and members of PPTC and the ExCom. I would be reduced to a pile of ash without their hard work to field and relay the hundreds of questions and comments we receive and be able to respond with clarity and precision. I heard from many of the messaging committee members about how hard Beth works to create the volunteer schedule, and to pick up orphaned shifts on the calendar. A well-deserved recipient of this award honoring a special person from PPTC!
And last but certainly not least, Deb Reynolds was awarded the Linda Tischer Lifetime Award for literally EVERYTHING she has done and still does for PPTC. I’ll share a few snippets of one of the MANY nominations she received this year, being mine…
All you need to do is look at the past several years of PPTC's existence. It wouldn't have been possible without Deb stepping onto the ExCom to right the ship, and to keep it as steady as possible over the years. She has selflessly poured countless hours into her position as VP of Operations as well as leading special events, volunteering for everything the club does, and leading local and women's-specific rides… and keeping everything in line to ensure the club stays afloat. She has been a great source of inspiration to me, especially in showing me what it means to lead this club by example. Deb has done all of this, without any search for recognition, and through some extremely personally tough times in the past year. Through all of this she always put others first, making sure that PPTC stayed on course, and ensured the ability for others to ride safely and happily with the club before she could even consider riding again herself. Deb is also the only person in the entire PPTC organization who is allowed to call or text me at any hour of the day. And in case you want to test this theory, please also see above: Beth Merricks’ award of Volunteer of the Year.
Congratulations again to all of our award recipients, and a huge THANK YOU to the many PPTC volunteers who help us keep doing what we love to do, and bolstering the amazing community we have established for many years. All of them truly understand the spirit of leading by example, and may we all be inspired by their passion for cycling and PPTC to grow the love of our cycling club throughout our communities.
Be safe, ride well, and see you at another social event in Maryland this month!
Call for Statistics - 2019 Cast Iron Crotch

It's time once again to collect names and numbers for the Potomac Pedalers' Order of the Cast Iron Crotch. If people have been telling you that you're crazy to ride your bike so much, this is your chance to be certifiable. Inductees must have bicycled outdoors a minimum of 5,000 miles during 2019. As usual, the prize is bragging rights.

To add your name to the list, please send the following information to before March 31, 2020:

 * Your name
 * Age as of December 31, 2019
 * Total miles ridden
 * Number of days of riding
 * Maximum number of miles ridden in one week
 * Number of weeks not riding
 * Number of crashes (hopefully zero!)
 * Date of first ride
 * Date your mileage total crossed 5,000 miles.

Several club members have inquired about a printable distance log. Mark Pankin has an excellent downloadable spreadsheet at . If you see him on a ride, please be sure to tell him thank-you!
PPTC Lewes Weekend 2020 - Register Now!
April 24-26, 2020

Get an early jump on spring by joining us for a weekend of cycling at the beach. Lewes is a small, picturesque, and historic town near Rehoboth Beach. This weekend is noted for its sociability and ease in meeting new people, so come alone or with a friend or spouse. Attendance is limited to 80 people so sign up early to reserve your spot. Registration is online only via the PPTC website.

Rides range in length from 20 to 65+ miles and are flat, although there are usually headwinds at the beach. Many rides visit nearby wildlife refuges, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, and remote beaches. We also have rides that stay east of Route 1 and tour Lewes or travel to Rehoboth Beach via bike paths. Depending on the ride you choose, some begin at the Beacon Motel and some have a remote start after a short drive to a beach or nearby town.

PPTC member price for the weekend is $295 for single occupancy and $225 per person for doubles; non-members add $25. The prices are the same for non-cycling spouses or guests. If you are coming alone but would like to share a room, we can assign a roommate (double occupancy only). If you are interested in a triple room, please contact Cindy Marisch for pricing and availability. Hotel rooms have two double beds, or a queen bed, or a king bed. All have refrigerators. The Beacon Motel does not allow pets.

The cost of the weekend includes the following:

  • Nice motel two blocks from the center of town and .4 mile from the beach.
  • Locked storage room for bikes or keep in your car.
  • Cue sheets will be available at the Beacon Motel starting Friday at noon.
  • Rides of various lengths available Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
  • Ice Cream Social/Welcome Party Friday night at the motel.
  • Breakfast Saturday and Sunday morning at the motel.
  • Lunch fixings for a bag-lunch on Saturday to take with you on the ride.
  • BYO Wine and Beer party on Saturday at the motel before dinner. Snacks provided.
  • Buffet dinner Saturday night in downtown Lewes, a short walk from the motel (cash bar available).
  • Free late checkout on Sunday with advance notice to hotel personnel.

Your hosts this year are Cindy Marisch and Bettina Myers. Cindy is responsible for registration and cue sheets. If you have questions about your registration, please contact Cindy at  c  or 571-243-4576. Bettina is responsible for food catering. If you are vegetarian, vegan, or have any other special dietary needs, please contact Bettina at least two weeks prior to the ride weekend at  b  or 202-577-5278 so we can accommodate your needs accordingly.

Note: Your registration will be under the PPTC group and not your individual names. The cost for the weekend includes food and lodging and cannot be separated. Registration at the Beacon for this weekend must be completed through PPTC online, not directly through the Beacon. If you have questions about the Beacon Motel itself, please check their website .

CANCELLATION POLICY:  Before April 10 th , full refund (minus $25 per person cancellation charge). After April 10 th : No refunds.

Registration link:

Volunteer Dinner Night Winners & Pics!
Photo Credit: Ed Hazelwood