If you’ve ever said to yourself, “just one more mile” while out for an already long run or a bike ride, you’ll want to know about some major outdoor athletic challenges being presented during Massachusetts Car-Free Week this month. While September 16-22 is set aside in the commonwealth to encourage folks to find an alternate way to make their daily commute, there’s a crowd taking the concept a bit further with two new events – both of which are using Hancock Shaker Village in Pittsfield as their launching point.
MassBike will present their very first Berkshires to Boston Bicycle Tour from Wednesday, September 18th through Saturday, September 21st, kicking off with a dinner and Boxcar Lilies concert on the Hancock Shaker Village grounds on Wednesday evening, then heading out the 240 miles to Boston, for an eventual finish line at the Hub on Wheels cycling festival. Though registration for the ride is drawing to a close, the concert on Wednesday the 18th is free and open to the public. Come help us send the riders off in style! You can also contact MassBike about next year’s ride or about volunteering to help ensure smooth transitions at all the stops along the way this year.
The inexhaustible Michael Menard is returning as race director of the HSV Trail Races on Saturday, September 21st, this time presenting both a traditional 26.2 mile trail marathon as well as repeating the “Simply Grueling” 50 mile ultra-marathon which was launched in 2012. Registration for both of these races is still available at ultrasignup.com, but be sure you’ve familiarized yourself with the rugged terrain of the Pittsfield State Forest, as this is a very challenging and technical course. You’ll keep putting one foot in front of the other if you keep in mind that every finisher takes home a free six pack of Big Elm beer!