Members Handbook

P.O. Box 2758, Joliet, IL 60434



Joliet Bicycle Club Inc.

A Brief JBC History

The Joliet Bicycle Club was formally organized as the Joliet YMCA Bicycle Club by a small group of bicycling pioneers back in 1974. The moving force and first president was Jack Coleman. Jack served as president until 1980, while Ruth Coleman was treasurer until 1978 and Newsletter Editor through 1980. In 1982 the club voted to sever their affiliation with the YMCA and the present Joliet Bicycle Club Inc. (JBC) started in the 1983 cycling season as an independent organization.

In the very first year, 1974, The Joliet YMCA Bicycle Club sponsored their first invitational ride, the 4th of July Ride. The club’s first century officially started in 1979 with the “Summers End Century” which became known as the “Sudden Century”. In 1980, the “Across Illinois Bike Ride” was the clubs third invitational which emerged from Chuck Mickelwright’s dream of an Illinois RAGBRAI style ride. Today, the club consists of around 200 members.

The Joliet Bicycle Club Members Handbook

Welcome to the Joliet Bicycle Club and we hope you enjoy our club as much as we do. One of the best ways to do that is to become an active member. This JBC Member’s Handbook will give you an overview of the club’s programs so use it for reference. Please feel free to ask other members any questions you may have as well.

Organization: The Joliet Bicycle Club (JBC) has four elected officers: President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer. Other volunteers are essential to help the club function and include: Ride Calendar Chair, Social Chair, Membership Chair, Ride and Invitational Statistician, Newsletter Editor, JBC Website Manager and Ride Leaders.

Safety: JBC is a safety minded organization and we strive to minimize the dangers of cycling. Please note: Helmets are Required on All JBC Rides. Members are also expected to obey the Rules of the Road as they apply to bicyclists. This includes any and all states visited while on a JBC Club ride.

Communication: As a JBC member, you will receive an Electronic Newsletter, published approximately every month. Members are encouraged to submit articles, but they must pertain to bicycling. Please note: Information for the next Newsletter must be provided to the Editor at least 1 week prior to that month. (e.g. Article for August Newsletter must be submitted by July 24th)

Membership: JBC is comprised of members from all across the Metropolitan area. Members range in age from 15-90. Dues are a mere $15.00 annually for adults over 18, with minors included on their parent’s membership. Every member must complete and submit a membership application every calendar year. Upon reaching a designated mileage goal, all members are eligible for the club mileage award. The award is determined by the board and handed out at the annual Awards Banquet held in November.

Assortment of Activities: The club also provides other methods of entertainment and exercise throughout the year. Our annual Chili Cook-off occurs in the winter (usually February) followed by an evening of bowling, compliments of JBC. There has been a variety of entertainment organized in past years at different times and places. The Social Committee is creative in this endeavor and the activities are listed in the Ride List and Event Calendar and the Newsletter. Some of these activities include Hiking, Cross Country Skiing, and a host of other fun things to do. It’s fun and healthy to be a JBC member!

Meetings: General meetings are held on the second Monday of selected months at a location announced in the Newsletter and on the Ride List and Event Calendar. The meeting begins at 7:30 pm and often follows an Agenda with an open floor opportunity for members and/or guest speakers. Meetings conclude with friendly conversation and pizza provided by JBC. Board meetings are exclusive to officers, and are held just prior to the General Meeting or at other designated times and locations.

Touring: Our touring program is famous for its variety, with rides of all types scheduled throughout the year. In winter months shorter rides are the norm, but the majority of the year brings rides of all lengths. Our Ride List and Event Calendar has many specific rides listed that have been assigned a ride category or speed level, so members can match their skill levels, and it also includes a ride contact in case of questions. We recommend new riders get the feel of things by trying the shorter and less difficult rides at first.

On Social rides, the ride leader chooses the route and oversees the entire ride. It is the leader’s responsibility to assure that everyone knows where the ride is going and approximately how many miles will be covered. No rider is left behind on social rides. The leader has the authority to cancel a ride if the conditions are unsafe.

Riders at our Show and Go rides decide the route, distance and pace for the day with someone designated for reporting mileage to the Statistician. These rides do not require the group to finishing together, so please choose your ride carefully. We welcome new and different rides, and members are encouraged to make suggestions.

Ride Categories: Rides are categorized with 5 speed levels to cover all riding abilities. When choosing to participate on a ride, please consider your ability to ride at the posted speed level.

Level 1 2 3 4 5
MPH 10.0 – 12.4 12.5 – 15.0 15.1 – 18.0 18.1 – 20.0 20.1 >


JBC has a long standing policy that doesn’t allow new members to ride alone. One of our riders should always be willing to ride with a new member. We strongly recommend you choose rides with a speed level you are comfortable with. We expect our new members to know which speed level best suits them for future rides. (Social will not drop riders, S&G and Ad Hoc ride may).

S Social Ride and/or Event
S&G Show and Go
Ad Hoc Schedule an event via email Google Groups (12 hour advance notice required)
RSVP Call the ride/event leader prior the event


Posting a Ride: Each month we publish a Ride List and Event Calendar by date, time, location, distance and pace for every ride. Each ride has a contact person to call for ride information should it be necessary. Members can also participate in the Google Groups (GG) email list-server to ask more detailed questions, or offer an Ad Hoc ride. Some months can have over 100 different rides for you to choose from and “Theme” rides will also occur from time to time.

Ride Leaders: Social Rides include a member designated as the ride leader. The Ride List and Event Calendar includes the names and phone numbers of the ride leader. This leader determines the pace, distance and route for each ride.

Rides that do not have a ride leader are designated as a Show and Go (S&G) and a contact person is listed in the Ride List and Event Calendar, in the event you have any questions about the S&G ride. On an S&G, riders can split up into different groups and each group determines its distance and speed.

Anyone can and should be a ride leader as more leaders offer more variety of rides. Just contact the ride chairperson at the meeting, by email or by phone. Let them know the Speed Level, anticipated mileage, date, starting time and starting location. Before any ride begins, have the riders sign in on a ride form. This allows leaders to know who everyone is, and you have a ready-made list to report riders and mileage to the Statistician. The above also applies to Ad Hoc rides, with the added stipulation of a Google Groups notification 12 hours before the ride starts.

JBC 4th of July Century Ride: The Joliet Bicycle Club hosts an annual invitational Ride every 4th of July. This ride often attracts 1,000+ riders. Much of the proceeds are used to contribute back to the community and for club marketing. JBC cannot achieve this without volunteer help from its members. Please consider this and let our Ride Committee know if you’re interested in helping. There is also a ‘workers ride’ for volunteers held prior to the 4th of July and it is well attended.

Ride Mileage Guidelines: The board has the final decision on all rides. Mileage includes round trip, from the posted starting and returning point. For Invitationals, mileage cannot exceed the longest route planned by that organization. (E.G. JBC 4th of July Century = 100 miles)

JBC has adopted the following guidelines/rules for reporting miles. Any miles not reported in this manner will be disallowed.

  1. The ride must be listed in the monthly Event Calendar or as an Ad Hoc in Google Groups.
  2. Ride mileage starts and ends at the scheduled meeting point.
  3. All riders must start at the scheduled time posted.
  4. At least two riders are required on an Ad Hoc ride.
  5. There must three or more club members riding on out-of-State rides. This applies to both single and multi-day rides.
  6. Miles ridden from home and back to home do not count.
  7. Your membership must be current for any miles to be counted. Dues are inexpensive, so make sure you are current for your miles to count.
  8. Miles must be submitted to the ride Statistician by email or phone within 3 days of the ride.
  9. Miles submitted for each ride and for all riders must be submitted by one person! Designate this person at start of ride.
  10. Invitational Rides must be published on the Ride List and Event Calendar or on Google Groups as an Ad Hoc. Rides not listed need board approval for mileage to count.

Rules of the Road: As a responsible bicycle rider, all members of JBC are expected to obey all rules of the road, be courteous to motorists, stop at all stop signs/lights, signal an intention to turn in advance, ride on the right side of the road, ride single file in traffic and ride intelligently. Also, as a responsible cyclist, it is expected that all riders will have their bicycles in good working order and carry a minimum number of cycling necessities with them. These include:

  1. Spare tube/patch kit, pump, and basic tools specific to bicycles
  2. Full water bottle(s)
  3. Quick energy snacks
  4. Have your cell phone with you at all times.
  5. Bright Lights (even in the Daylight)

Bicycling Terms & Lingo: Riding in a group requires that all riders alert each other as to their location or conditions that might affect the entire group. For the safety of all riders, please adopt these verbal communications. Some common things you might hear on a ride are:

Car Back/Car Up: Alerts riders that a vehicle is approaching from ahead or behind. If riding two or three abreast riders should get in a single file. Note: This road sharing gesture is actually required by law and is good marketing for any bike club. You do not want a 2000 pound vehicle irritated with you.

Slowing/Stopping: Lets riders at the back of a group know that the group is slowing down or stopping.

Car Right/Left: Alerts riders crossing an intersection that a vehicle is approaching.

Clear: Lets Riders know that an intersection is clear of traffic and is safe to cross. All riders are expected to LOOK BOTH WAYS, regardless of this call.

On Your Left/Right: Signals that a rider is passing or being passed.

Glass: Glass is on the road surface.

Hole: There is a hole in the road.

SAG: “Support and Gear”. In practice, it means the ride has support vehicles patrolling the route to assist disabled or injured cyclists.

Invitational Ride: A ride hosted by an organization which usually charges an entry fee for each rider and provides SAG services, marked routes, and official rest stops with food. (E.G. JBC’s 4th of July Century Ride)

Google Groups: Google Groups is a list-server for the Joliet Bicycle Club where all members are able to post information regarding activities relating to JBC and/or biking in general.

General Guide lines:

  1. Please maintain civility and think about what you post. All articles posted are to be in good taste.
  2. All posts must reflect your full name.
  3. There will be ABSOLUTELY NO denigration of an individual or a group of individuals.
  4. There will be no tolerance for vitriolic or cynical commentary about the club or its members.
  5. There will be no posts regarding business issues pertaining to the club. All business issues must be presented at a general meetings.
  6. Posts related to charitable Invitationals and donations are to be brought before the board or at a general meetings first.

Abusers of these policies will be warned once and then temporarily removed from Google Groups. Repeat offenders will be permanently removed. Decisions regarding these policies will be determined and ruled on by the board.



Article I

The name of the organization shall be: The Joliet Bicycle Club, Inc.

Article II

Aims: The aim of this organization shall be:

  1. To promote a greater public awareness of the pleasures, benefits and usefulness of bicycling.
  2. To provide a service to our community in all areas involving bicycling.
  3. To advocate the rights and responsibilities of bicyclists.
  4. To improve conditions for bicycling.
  5. To provide opportunity for bicyclists of all age to share their ideas and experiences in an organized manner.

Article III


Anyone who is 18 years of age or older, who owns and rides a bicycle, or who is sincerely interested in promoting the clubs aims, is eligible for membership. Children under the age of 18 are eligible to ride with paid family members. Membership runs from January 1-December 31.

Article IV


Club dues shall be $15.00 per year for individual membership. A vote of those in attendance of the June meeting (2/3) will entertain a motion to change or retain the club dues for the following club year. All dues and funds shall be made payable to the Joliet Bicycle Club, Inc. Funds will be deposited in interest bearing accounts, at the discretion of the executive board. An annual audit shall be made of the organization accounts. Liability insurance shall be purchased annually, traditionally June-to-June for the Joliet Bicycle Club, Inc.

Article V


The following officers shall be elected by the membership: President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer. These offices shall constitute the executive board. The President presides at meetings and is responsible for general leadership of the club. The Vice-President will preside in the absence of the President and is responsible for insuring that an annual audit is conducted and may be assigned certain duties by the President. The Treasurer takes care of all money and collects all dues. The Secretary keeps a record of all meetings.

Article VI


Elections of club officers shall be held annually. A nominating committee, appointed by the President shall present a list of candidates for the offices to be filled. Additional names may be placed in nomination from the floor, immediately prior to the election. A plurality vote shall be necessary to elect.

Article VII


Regular meetings shall be held on the second Monday of the month, unless otherwise posted. The President may call special meetings whenever required. Ten members constitute a quorum.

Article VIII

Order of Business

The order of business at a regular meeting shall be:

  1. Call to order
  2. Reading of the minutes of the previous meeting
  3. Report of officers and committees
  4. Unfinished business
  5. New business: announcement of rides, special meetings, etc.

Article IX


The following committees may be formed as the need arises:

Event Calendar, Ride statistics, Social Membership, Safety Program, Newsletter Editor, Designer, Finance-Fund Raising, Legislative, Refreshments, Route Planning, Public Relations, Internet Website Manager, T-Shirts sales, and all other committees deemed necessary.

Article X

The constitution may be amended at any of the regularly scheduled meetings of the organization by a two-thirds vote of the members present.


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