Frequently Asked Questions:
Can I ride 500 miles?
It may be a challenge depending on your experience and fitness, but the answer is yes! Training rides will be planned in late spring and early summer. In addition, we have training and safety resources below:
- Sample Training Calendar
- Bicycle Safety Tips
- How to Prepare for a Long Distance Bicycle Tour video
Who can participate in the Ride?
Anyone can participate ages 13 and older locally and globally.
Do I ride alone?
You can ride alone, or you can find a group to ride with. Especially on hills, never ride more than two abreast.
What if I have a flat tire?
The Ride is a fully supported event and provides a professional bike mechanic (with supplies), massage therapist, daily route maps, marked roads, rest stops, emergency phone numbers, SAG vehicles, and overnight camping sites with showers. In addition, breakfast and dinner are provided for participants.
Where do I sleep and shower?
Both indoor and outdoor sleeping accommodations are available at local schools, churches, community centers, and parks. We ask that sleeping areas and camping sites be quiet after 9:30 p.m.
Showers and bathrooms will be available at each overnight stop (see Lodging Information.) Cyclists will need to use public or private facilities during the day along the ride.
What do I eat on the Ride?
Cyclists will be provided with breakfasts and dinners daily. While breakfast will be served from 6-7 a.m., cyclists may eat at their own pace. Supper will be served from 6:30-7:30 p.m., and we want all cyclists/volunteers to be ready to sit down to eat supper together. Volunteers from local Habitat affiliates will join us during these evening meals.
Lunches are the responsibility of each cyclist at his/her own expense. Energy snacks and beverages will be provided at daily rest stops.
How much do I need to fundraise?
Each full-week and 3-day Habitat 500 cyclist must raise a minimum of $500 to participate in the Ride. 1-day riders must raise $250. By the first day of the Ride, contributions or a personal commitment totaling the minimum must be turned in. The cyclist’s personal commitment in lieu of unpaid pledges is a check.
What happens to the money I raise?
All funds collected by riders for the Habitat 500 are donations to the Habitat 500. Habitat Minnesota, as the coordinator of the Ride, collects, manages, and distributes these funds. Each Habitat 500 rider can choose up to three Habitat affiliates (local, national, or global) to support with their fundraising. All funds sent out will be distributed to the affiliate or affiliates chosen by the rider except when a chosen affiliate is not in compliance with the standards set by Habitat International (“Good Standing”). This is not a common occurrence.
Attempts will be made to connect with the affiliate. If the affiliate remains out of Good Standing for four months after fundraising is closed, the rider will be contacted and asked to select a different Habitat affiliate to receive their fundraising or to send funds to the Habitat 500 bike.home. If riders don’t let us know their preference by June 1, funds will go toward supporting Habitat Minnesota’s statewide programming.
What should I do with checks I receive for my fundraising?
We’re working to streamline our processes so that riders don’t have to hand write their donor info, send it in, then have Habitat Minnesota type it into our spreadsheet manually. We’re asking that riders enter their offline donations right into their GreatFeats pages. That way we can easily pull a report of all donations, and riders will have an accurate thermometer on their fundraising page for all donations they received, and not just their donations online. It will also save riders from filling out all the donor info by hand, and will cut down on confusion over illegible handwriting. Before mailing in checks, please enter your donations onto your GreatFeats page (see instructions). Then mail in donation checks to Habitat Minnesota regularly, sending the short Offline Donations Paid Form with them. This form can be downloaded from the fundraising page after you log in. To access this webpage, please email email@example.com for the username and password.
No matter which Habitat affiliate you are riding for, send your funds raised to Habitat Minnesota with checks made out to HABITAT 500. After the ride, we will write to the affiliate you represented and send them a check totaling the funds you raised for them.
Can I access online donor addresses in order to send thank yous?
Because of security and privacy reasons, GreatFeats cannot share donor’s personal information with Riders. If you would like to email a thank you to an online donor, follow these instructions:
- Log in to your GreatFeats account and click “manage my page” in the top right corner of the white box with your name in it.
- Click “Raise at least $500” at the bottom of the list on the left side of the screen.
- Click “Thank Your Donors” to see a list of your online donors and how much they donated. You can email them thank yous from this screen.
*Please note that sending a thank you email to multiple donors will NOT mean that you’ve shared your donors email addresses with one another. If you email three donors at once, the only information they will see is the other donors’ first names.*
How can I get my rider picture from last year’s Ride?
Visit our photographer Renee’s Flickr page and find your photo in the “Habitat 500 2019 Riders” folder.
Where can I get more information about the Habitat 500?
For questions not answered on our website, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 612-331-4439, extension 4. Once you register for the ride, you will be signed up for a bi-monthly newsletter with everything from Ride updates to training and fundraising tips.