Welcome! The VeloRaptors are a social group of cyclists based out of Montclair, Oakland. Our regular rides are: Sunday - 8:45 Meet at Paddington Cafe in Montclair, Wednesday - 9:00 Meet at Starbucks in Montclair, and Saturday - 8:45 Meet at Warehouse 416, 416 26th in Uptown Oakland. Most rides are 30 miles (or less).
We usually stop for coffee/snacks at a cafe along the way.
We have great news. Bike East Bay had a “hugely successful” end-of-the-year fundraising campaign, in the words of Rebecca Saltzman, Development Director. She said, “The match from VeloRaptors inspired folks to give additional gifts and/or give more generously.” During the 4 days from December 27-31, Bike East Bay received donations of $24,451, far exceeding the match of $17,250 contributed by individual VeloRaptor members.
We should all be proud that we were able to give such a boost to Bike East Bay. Our efforts help enable them to advocate for better and safer cycling infrastructure throughout Alameda and Contra Costa counties and to offer educational programs and rides to the cycling community.
Tragically, on April 14, 2021, Joe Shami, “The Legend of Mount Diablo”, was struck and killed by a vehicle while riding his bicycle in Lafayette, CA. In honor of Joe’s efforts, spirit, and inspiring demonstration of life fully lived there are now two wonderful remembrances of his life of cycling. The California State Parks Foundation has dedicated the Bike Turnout Project on Mt. Diablo to Joe and a bench has been placed along the Lamorinda trail near his home. In addition, Joe’s passing was also noted in a recent issue of the MIT News which reads as follows:
Although he is not with us today, Joe left a special gift in his will of $123,415.61 to California State Parks Foundation to fund additional Bike Turnouts on Mount Diablo. Read more about Joe and the Bike Turnout Project at this link https://act.calparks.org/a/biketurnout .
Here are pics of both Joe at the top of Mt. Diablo and few VeloRaptors at the bench dedicated to him.
If you find yourself on the LaMorinda trail you will find Joe’s bench near the birdhouse village as shown below.
For several years the VeloRaptors have supported BORP, an organization which provides sports, recreation and fitness programming for children, youth and adults with physical disabililities and visual impairments. On Saturday, May 13, BORP held its 21st annual Ride, Roll and Stroll in Santa Rosa. We are proud to say that 11 VeloRaptors participated and collectively raised $23,600, smashing our goal of $15,000. The ride this year was a memorial tribute for former team member Dennis Cathey. The team, headed up by team captain Randy Mellin, had several prodigious fundraisers on it, including one of the top 5, Steven Goldenberg. Altogether the team inspired 103 contributions to BORP.
VeloRaptors Ready to Ride!
You can learn more about the BORP organization at their website:
VeloRaptors were out and about over the weekend January 28-29, in spite of the weather!
Saturday, VeloRaptors and Oakland Rotarians once again did the Martinez-Benicia Two Bridge ride. We rode in and out of foggy patches, and it so happened that the Carquinez Bridge was in fog. But, we found the sun, hot coffee and fabulous pastries at the One House Bakery in Benecia!
On Sunday, Dale put on his annual Soup Kitchen. Moreover, the 49rs were playing for the NFC championship vs the (Philadelphia) Eagles.
Seven ‘raptors rode from Montclair out to Alamo, despite the cold and rain. Several others took the more ‘sensible’ method and drove out to Dale’s. All were rewarded with a plethora of hot soups waiting to be consumed. Thank you Dale for helping us survive the weather and the Niners shellacking.
Dale’s soup kitchen – Five soups this year including Chicken Tortilla, Beef Chili, Salmon Chowder, Minestrone, and a Moroccan style entry.
Seven hardy riders braved the initial cool temperatures today and had a very nice ride. We actually had 8 total participants, as Rob did a short ride, but Mike M. came along to take his place. Chris S. gets honorable mention for showing up at L’Cajou to cheer us on.
We encountered a light sprinkle as we left Orinda and enjoyed sunshine all the way back.
Join us for a ride around Alameda Island on Saturday – Oct, 29, in conjunction with Oakland Rotary. This ride is designed for those who may want a bit of exercise followed by a good beer. If that is you, then come along on Saturday.
Two options are planned
A 13 mile ride starting at Faction Brewery at 10:30. This will be a loop that gets back to Faction about noon when there will be a food truck there https://www.factionbrewing.com/visit#food-trucksHere is the route; https://ridewithgps.com/routes/41286192 For those wanting a longer ride, meet at the Lake Merritt Library at 9:30, we will then rendezvous with those at Faction at 10:30. That will make a 40 mile ride. Email Veloraptors@gmail.com if you plan to ride.
Saturday – April 23, a pack of VeloRaptors helped R4R get to 98% of its goal of $180,000. Both the fund raising and the the cycling aspects of the ride were a great success. The weather was perfect, rest stops were appropriately spaced and well supplied, and of course the VeloRaptor riders were excellent company. The R4R organizers offered a variety of routes and most of us chose the 68 mile route from Suisan City to Sacramento. Although Paul L. (in bright yellow) started in Oakland, completing over 100 miles.
Some of us stopped for a libation before boarding the train back to Suisan City.
Kevin M. (in street clothes) provided SAG support. I should note that VeloRaptor Tom (below) and his grandson were among the top 10 overall fundraisers!