Kate McGee, since 2023
In 2016 I bumped into a Zen priest on the steps of the SF Zen Center. I had just returned from burning man, he had just returned from this thing called the Buddhist Bicycle Pilgrimage, it sounded amazing. A year later, as my alarm went off while in the warm comfort of my own bed, I thought to myself how leaving meant uncertainty. Staying however, meant letting this vision dissolve into a memory of something I thought of once but never pursued. And thus, I forged into the darkness of the early morning to commence a pilgrimage.
John Ungvarsky, since 2023
Cycling is a form of meditation, with the added benefit of cardio and stress relief. Dennis Crean and the passing of my father in 2017 inspired me to purchase a road bike and ride in my first BBP. I’m very grateful for all of the support from the monastics, volunteers, riders, and the Board. Their efforts culminate in a special synergy, linking Buddhism with a memorable cycling experience, essentially a mobile kalyanamitta. I’m excited to be on the Board and helping to keep our Dharmawheels turning!
Aditya Sharma, since 2022
This sits at the intersection of the two worlds that I love. I experienced my first pilgrimage in 2017, days after I bought my first bike. The two-day journey meditations and cycling with a caring community was revitalizing.
Since then, cycling has turned to be the best thing I’ve done, on some of the most challenging days. Now as part of the board, I am happy to share this experience with others.
Be well, Aditya
Vlado Bradbury, since 2021
Mostly we ride, sometimes
through the most beautiful scenery.
(like here on King Ridge,
or next month Mt Diablo)
Sometimes we talk about meditation.
I did my first pilgrimage in 2012. Being one of the first longer rides I had attempted, the mileage felt daunting at first. As the ride went on though the sweetness of the community and the serenity of the monks shone through. The experience remains a warm light in my memory, re-kindled year upon year =)
One of my favorite memories in particular is of the song we were taught in the city of ten thousand Buddhas:
“I have too much,
I am grateful,
Share the blessing,
May all be blessed,
May all things flourish,
May all awaken,
Flora Chen, since 2022
There’s nothing like some type II fun (aka voluntary suffering) to gain a little insight into the first noble truth. But in all seriousness, as a recently-turned-cycling-fanatic with an affinity towards the Buddhist teachings, I couldn’t have asked for a better event than the pilgrimage!
2021 was my first time attending the pilgrimage. Though it was shortened to a single day event due to Covid, I still had a great time riding and bonding with the community. And now, I’m on the board looking to add a part to the magic, while hopefully not stirring up chaos in the process!
Andrew Hillman, 2022 Volunteer Coordinator
I stumbled across a flyer for the Buddhist Bicycle Pilgrimage at Eugene Cash’s Sunday Night Meditation in 2007. I thought, “Fantastic! This combines two of my passions.” Been back every year since. I know the event itself is only one weekend but I carry it with me throughout the entire year. In the middle of Winter I’m thinking, “I need to do my at least 70 miles every week” to maintain my fitness for the Pilgrimage in September. I love the Buddhist Bicycle Pilgrimage.
I have ridden the BBP for several years, and previously volunteered as a Rest Stop and Bus Coordinator. I came across the Pilgrimage while visiting Spirit Rock but did not believe I was able to complete the course at that time, having bicycled mostly as a commuter. I waited until the following year to ride my first pilgrimage when temperatures reached 110 degrees. Since that time I have embraced cycling as a recreational passion, on the road, in the mountains and for urban travel.
I encourage anyone to participate in any small or large way that they feel moved to, whether it would be as a volunteer or rider for part of or the whole route. See you on the road!
Lene Vinding, Treasurer
I had heard of the Dharmawheels ride for many years, living in Ukiah and riding recreationally. As timing would have it, I could never work out riding or volunteering, until now. When I saw the call for Treasurer, I was hoping this would be the answer to being in service with something I wholeheartedly wanted to support. I’ve loved the idea from afar, and am excited to get to experience it. Looking forward to serving on the board as the treasurer and finally riding the two-day pilgrimage this year!
Peter Gang, route designer & coordinator of Zero-Waste initiative
I have long sought out endorphin-enhancing activities like distance running and biking as a means toward stillness. I have participated five times in the pop-up sangha that is the Buddhist Bicycle Pilgrimage — three years as a rider and two years (I think!) as a route-marking and food prep volunteer. I joined the Board last year and made good on my threat to move us in the direction of zero waste. This entire ephemeral Dharmawheels/BBP community brings me great and lasting delight.
Scott Green, Vice President and Ride Coordinator
I was introduced to mindful cycling through the Hazon Environmental ride. Later I joined the Buddhist Bicycle Pilgrimage’s to Alokha Vihara and then the classic route to Abhayargiri. Both were transformative and inspiring. I am humbled to be on the Dharmawheels Board and look forward to serving our community. I love the Dharma and am delighted to explore its expression through the path of cycling.
Peter Crimmin, President
I live in Boston and travel to NorCal for pilgrimages.
2023 is my 14th year as a Dharmawheels pilgrim.
I came for Buddhism and bicycles.
I returned for friendship.
I stay for service.
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