Cranksgiving: A Bike Powered Food Drive

Nov 8, 2018

Fall is full of so many amazing soul and senses fulfilling elements. Coolin’ temps, changin’ hues, good vibes. For me, that good feeling I get when ever fall rolls around happens in part because I know it means another Cranksgiving “food drive by bike” ride is right around the corner. While the first Cranksgiving hit the streets of NYC in 1999, it has become an nation wide tradition, with events both big and small being hosted in towns and communities across the US. The food collected on these rides helps to provide thousands of needy families with a wealth of food during the week of Thanksgiving. What a way to truly live up to the spirit of cycling – bettering the lives of riders and their communities. For me personally, there is just something so magical in taking this tool that has changed my life in so many amazing ways and using it to help members in my own community.

Need a little inspo to get you rolling? Check out this awesome Cranksgiving overview:

Totally amazing, right?! Want in on this sweet piece of pumpkin pie? There are two ways you can use your velo to take part.

Way 1: Find a Cranksgiving in your area


Head on over to the Cranksgiving site to see if an event is being hosted in your area. Each event has its own rules and guidelines so be sure you visit the event page for your local Cranksgiving for all the juicy details. Can’t find an event in your area? No problem! Check out:

Way 2: Make your own Cranksgiving event or solo ride

Cranksgiving can be as official or unofficial as you want. The Cranksgiving site has a great how-to guide on hosting a group event. You can make it big – invite the whole community and submit your planned ride on the Cranksgiving site – or small – just a group of friends or just yourself.

cranksgiving by xtracycle
If planning a small friends ride or solo ride, here is a super simple break down on how to pull off a successful Cranksgiving ride:

1. Figure out what your local charity needs. Food, toiletries, pet supplies – you want to be sure you are collecting things that will have an impact.

2. Let friends and family know a week before that you are doing a food drive by bike. Ask who has some food that can be picked up on the day of your ride or money to donate so you can buy food. For a little bit of next level charity ridin’, you can also connect with local food co-ops and grocery stores to see if they have any food you can swing by and pick up the day of your ride.

3. Before your ride, whip up a simple map of your stops so you can be as efficient as possible.

4. On Cranksgiving day, bring some cash to buy groceries, your route map and set out on your adventure.

5. After the ride, bike your supplies to your charity drop off. Be sure to take pics of your haul to share with friends and family who supported you.

See – it’s that easy to have your pie and eat it too!

Before heading off on your official or unofficial ride, check out these tips for a successful Cranksgiving:

  • Reach out to friends and family before hand, asking either for their support by having food available to pick up at their house, OR a financial donation that will allow you buy food while on the ride.
  • Ask friends and family to buy groceries online and you will ride to the store to pick them up on the day of your event.
  • Plastic storage bins and laundry baskets are great for hauling epic loads. Strap them on the deck, into the Hooptie, on the U-tubes or onto your PorterRack (check for handlebar clearance)
  • Connect with a local business that can serve as a drop-off location which might be more convenient for folks than you coming to their house.
  • Put that bike trailer to good use and hitch it to your ride for extra carrying capacity!

Plan on riding this Cranksigiving and using your Xtracycle to do good? We’d love to see your epic haul!


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