Great Ohio Bicycle Adventure celebrates 25th anniversary in 2013

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The Great Ohio Bicycle Adventure takes its silver anniversary celebration to western Ohio in 2013.

GOBA’s rolling headquarters

One of the longest running mass bicycle rides in the US, GOBA-25 is calling itself “The Reunion of the Fittest” when it rolls out next June.

Along the way, cyclists can visit the Bicycle Museum of American in New Bremen, as well as the Armstrong Air and Space Museum, located in Neil Armstrong’s hometown of Wapakoneta.

At 25, GOBA is one of the longest running public state bike tours. Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa is the oldest, celebrating its 40th anniversary last year. Biking Across Kansas is approaching its 40th anniversary in a few years as well, getting its start in 1975.

View 2013 GOBA host towns in a larger map

Next year, some 2,000 to 2,500 GOBA cyclists will gather in Urbana on June 15 and set off the following morning on a ride that ends back in Urbana on June 22. Along the way, they’ll make overnight stops in Troy (2 nights), Greenville (1 night), New Bremen (2 nights), and Sidney (1 night).

They’ll travel at least 250 miles; 410 miles for those who take the optional layover day bike rides to Dayton and Wapakoneta.

In the introductory video, GOBA director Julie Van Winkle says:

“Part class reunion, part family gathering, GOBA-2013 will revisit a part of the state that is always popular with cyclists.”

The cyclists will take back country roads over “gentle terrain… not as hilly as previous years,” according to Van Winkle. Although riding through farmland, they’ll pass through forests that will block the occasional headwinds. Cyclists also ride on the Great Miami River Trail for a few miles.

In addition to the Bicycle Museum of America, the cyclist’s travels will take them to the Garst Museum with its Annie Oakley Center, the Maria Stein Shrine of Holy Relics, the Miami & Erie Canal and a tour of the Airstream factory. On Sunday night, Troy hosts a shoreline concert on the Great Miami River featuring Hotel California, an Eagles tribute band.

For the first time, GOBA will make available a GPS guide of the route, as well as paper maps.

GOBA is organized by Columbus Outdoor Pursuits, which also presents the Tour of the Scioto River Valley (TOSRV) and Across Ohio Bicycle Adventure (XOBA). estimates that GOBA has injected $10 million into the economies of the towns it has visited over the past 25 years.

Also, proceeds this year go to BikeLady, a Columbus-based group that provides bicycles to children who are victims of abuse, neglect or abandonment.

For other multi-day state bike tours, you can check out the Across State Bike Tour pages that I’ve been updating.

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