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Rookie Riders - City to Shore First Year Cyclists

rookie banner

Rookie Rider = a cyclist participating in City to Shore for the first time.

But I’ve been cycling for years, am I a Rookie Rider? Yes! 

Whether you’re a veteran cyclist or you’re new to the sport, you are new to the Bike MS: City to Shore Ride and we want to ensure your first experience is the best it can be. This page, and the Rookie Rider program, is dedicated to making this happen.

> Make sure you are in the know!

  • Read the monthly City to Shore Updates (e-news) and all other emails from Nicole Lewis for all important ride information and updates, including the Rookie Welcome email
  • Read and reference the Fundraising/Welcome Kit mailed to each cyclist 
  • Utilize as your go-to source for ride information  
  • If you have any questions or needs, please do not hesitate to contact Megan Sanders for more information

Connect with veteran City to Shore cyclists

> Don't wait to begin fundraising

Don't let the $300 minimum intimidate you - the average City to Shore cyclist raises more than $700 each. Raise $1,000 or more and become a member of the exclusive VIP Club. It's not hard to get there, and we're here to help you along the way.

> Start training now and learn how to ride in a crowd

> Make your ride meaningful


Your first City to Shore experience will be one you always remember. Ensure the best possible first year experience:

> Get your mandatory (free) bike inspection by September 25

  This inspection will ensure that you receive free bike maintenance during ride weekend. Learn more 

> Rookie VideoKnow the Cycling Basics

  • Stay hydrated by drinking before you become thirsty. Rest stops will be fully stocked - click here for route information. Click here for more information on proper hydration and nutrition
  • Wear padded shorts and gloves
  • Watch the video (at right) to know what to pack and what not to pack.
  • Visit the Cycling Equipment page for information on proper bike & helmet fit, ABC Quick Check and more.

> Experience Ocean City & Finish Line

After crossing the finish line to an abundance of cheering spectators, have your commemorative photo taken, collect your t-shirt, visit the Rookie Tent to win great prizes, and enjoy all Ocean City has to offer.

Click here for more information the Ocean City experience. If you are staying over on Saturday night, make your reservations via Access Ocean City and plan to enjoy all that Ocean City has to offer.

> Visit the Rookie Tents

Visit the Rookie Tents at the PATCO start to ask questions, pick up your rider number if you haven’t done so already, and turn in any additional funds AND at the Ocean City Finish Line to:

  • Register for the 2015 ride at the LOWEST rate of the year – just $20 - AND be entered to win a Trex FX 2.0 Bike courtesy of Danzeisen & Quigley
    • Congratulations to our 2014 winner, Jason Warren from the Road Dawgs team, and thank you to everyone who has already registered for 2015!
  • Mingle with fellow rookie cyclists 
  • Receive FREE giveaways 
  • Share your MS knowledge and score big time!

rookie sticker contest> Rookie Rest Stop Raffle 

Participate in the Rookie Rest Stop Raffle along the route to make YOUR mark against MS and win big! 

  • Check in with staff/volunteers at each rest stop to receive a mark on your rider number
  • Visit the Rookie Tent at the Ocean City finish line to show your ‘marks’ and receive your raffle ticket 
  • Receive a minimum of 2 ‘marks’ to be entered to win:
    • 1st Prize: $300 Bike Shop Gift Certificate to Beacon Cycling & Fitness. Congratulations to winner Shawn Mulford from Team Teva.
    • 2nd Prize: Body Geometry Fit courtesy of High Road Cycles. Congratulations to winner Eric Smith from Mike Gillespie team.



Rookie Riders are already looking forward to next year. So are we!

"I just wanted to say thank you for making this ride such a great experience! I was a rookie rider and everything was great! The volunteers were awesome at every rest stop, the DJ's were great, and the whole experience of riding was amazing!! I am so excited for next year and I am so thankful that so many people take their weekend to volunteer, ride and help out! It is amazing that you get so much support and encouragement for a bike ride!! This was an experience that I will never forget!!!"

- Walter Hummel

"This was my first year riding the MS 150 and I was extremely impressed; it was one of the best experiences of my life. To be a part of such an enormous event that ultimately helps so many with MS was exhilarating. Already looking forward to next year."

- Tom Maxwell

Please note: the cyclists pictured above are not the cyclists quoted.



Set your sights on this prestigious award! The Rookie Rider of the Year award is given to the top Rookie Rider fundraiser at the Awards Dinner in December.


Congratulations to previous winners who have earned this prestigious award as a first year City to Shore cyclist:

Joe Grabowski - 2014

Guy Muzio - 2013

Mick O’Mahony  - 2012

Joe Calabro - 2011  (see story below)

Nikki Kahn - 2010

Rookie Rider of the Year 2011: Joseph C. Calabro

First-year cyclist Joe Calabro of Radnor, Pa., began training for the ride by biking two to three times per week covering between 15-35 miles each time. An avid runner for the past 20 years, he also continued his weekly routine of running five miles per day, three days per week. The 60-year-old cyclist joined The Wild Hogs team this year after the encouragement of daughter Christy Calabro who has been a participant since 2009.

“My ex-wife, the mother of my three children, was diagnosed with MS in the late 1970's. I intimately understand what the disease can do to individuals and it was an increased motivation to be able to benefit my children’s' mother as well as many others who suffer from this illness,” said Calabro.

“During the fundraising process, I had many people express to me that they had someone close to them who had the disease. It's something that most people ordinarily choose not to talk about, and I was surprised at how prevalent MS actually is,” he said.

Calabro’s fundraising efforts, which he credits to a letter-writing campaign to friends, family and clients, surpassed his expectations. “My initial goal was set at $2,500 but as donations continued to come in, I raised it several times to continue to challenge myself and those who visited my website. My final total was $7,175.”

He offers this advice to anyone who’s thinking of part-taking in Bike MS: City to Shore Ride for the first time, “Two things. First, this is like two events combined into one, both requiring commitment for the overall success of the ride. There is the fundraising effort and there is the physical challenge of the ride itself. Get fully involved in both, because the feeling of accomplishment for the physical part of the event will be greater when you know that you have worked hard to get the word out to potential donors in raising funds for the cause which is the purpose for this event. Secondly, I know this sounds obvious but, make certain you have very well-padded biking shorts and a comfortable seat.”

When asked what his favorite part of the event was, he finds it difficult to single out any one part but offers, “The final stretch-run coming into Ocean City, passing throngs of cheering, sign-waving spectators on both sides of the road, was incredibly emotional and memorable.” He adds, “We met lots of friendly riders and volunteers, and, despite 7000 riders, we actually bumped into several of our personal acquaintances during the ride. It's the enthusiasm of all the participants involved that make this event so special."

Already registered for the 2012 ride, Calabro looks forward to journeying 150 miles to help create a world free of MS.

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