The Sidney Sun-Telegraph - Serving proudly since 1873 as the beautiful Nebraska Panhandle's first newspaper

Biking club welcomes everyone


Caitlin Sievers

Members of the Cycle Sidney group from left to right: Jamie Canas, Noah Canas, Tre Canas, Randy Flamig, Jamie Lines, Sharon Bieganski, Allen Bieganski, Craig Schwaeger, Koti Petluri, Jeff Lines, Joab Olsen, Deanna Flamig, Stan Flessner and Eric Ketchum.

Sometimes its hard to develop a social circle when moving to a new place. Sharon Bieganski solved this problem by forming Cycle Sidney, a community bike ride.

Although Bieganski grew up in Potter, she moved back to Sidney from Colorado Springs last October.

"I didn't know a lot of people and thought this would be a great way to meet new people," she said.

When Bieganski and her husband lived in Colorado Springs they had access to a variety of outdoor clubs for those interested in running and biking.

"So we thought, hey let's give it a try here and see if it actually works," she said.

The club, which meets at the Legion Park shelter house every Tuesday evening at 6:30 started out with about eight members at the beginning of the summer. Participation slowly crept upward. Now the group averages about 17 participants.

The group travels about six or seven miles along the Deadwood Trail through the park. Utilizing the trail helps ensure that participants don't have to deal with traffic.

"We have such a mixture of people that ride," Bieganski said.

Some riders might be used to biking 20 miles each day, while others are just beginning.

"We have a little guy that this was his third week riding his bike," she said. "He's brand new."

Some members are participating in the National Bike Challenge. In this challenge participants from different towns and cities compete against each other by earning points for every day they bike as well as for how many miles they ride.

"They have a points system and it's like a competition between towns," Bieganski said.

Not only is the community bike ride a great place to meet people, but working out in a group can also be a motivational tool.

"Several people have bought new bikes and thought they wanted to get back into riding again and that's a great way because it's so casual and it motivates you to have other people there with you," Bieganski said.

The club was just a good way for Sidney's cycling community to come together, said club participant Jeff Lines.

"I don't like going to the gym, and so if I can do something fun with other people I think it's just really fun," Bieganski said.

Group members often eat together after the bike ride in an effort to form friendships and support local businesses.

Some people might find the idea of joining a biking club daunting, but Bieganski promises a laid-back atmosphere.

"From what I've seen people have really enjoyed it no matter what skill level they're at," she said.

Bieganski is a freelance graphic designer and photographer who works from home.

"I'm stuck at home all day so that's why I really wanted to get out and meet some people," she said.

Some people might not think they're right for the group if they're not in shape, but Bieganski promises that isn't so. Some people ride faster while others keep a slower pace, but they always wait for each other at the end of the trail.

"We just want people to know that it's easy and accessible and fun," she said.

On last Tuesday night the ride had 15 participants.

"It's something to look forward to," said 15-year-old Joab Olsen.


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