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Cranksgiving attracts industry sponsors for its 24th event

Published November 9, 2023

SANTA FE, N.M. (BRAIN) — The 24th Cranksgiving bicycle-inspired food drive is underway nationwide and for the first time attracting additional industry sponsorship.

With more than 100 events this year — after a lull from the COVID-19 pandemic the past three years — the event has Hiplok and Deuter as national sponsors, joining distributor BTI.

"It's been a dream of ours as organizers for a while now to get the industry more involved, and this year we've seen some success," said Bill Lane, BTI's marketing director. "Bags and locks are central to the rider's experience. Hiplok sent out 30 of their signature wearable locks to help fatten organizer's prize kitties. Deuter held a series of raffles this fall. Both companies are offering significant discount codes to Cranksgiving organizers and participants alike in November."

So far this season, 35 states are hosting Cranksgiving drives which began in October in Ottawa, Ontario. "We're excited to see two happening in the Bentonville (Arkansas) area this year, and two in Chicago," Lane said. "Cranksgiving appears to have gone completely viral in Pennsylvania, with nine events across that state."

Bicycle messenger Antonio Rodrigues created Cranksgiving in 1991 as a pure street race, with grocery stores serving as checkpoints. It evolved in 1999 with local organizers teaming with area charities to form a list of food needs. Routes to local grocery stores are mapped out for cyclists to follow and purchase food with their own money.

Food concerns affect one in nine households each holiday season, according to the Cranksgiving organization.

"All of this is grassroots, put together by civic-minded riders in their local communities," Lane said. "Aside from a Cranksgiving website and social accounts, there is also a closed Facebook Group, where organizers can share ideas for manifests, checkpoints, and how to partner with local food banks. Cranksgiving is the closest thing we have to a cycling holiday, and in its 24th year, it appears to be going stronger than ever."

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