Why should I participate?
We each have our own reasons for participation but some of the most common are: losing a friend, partner or colleague; honoring the EMS providers who choose to serve their communities each and every day; and raising awareness of safety in EMS.
Who can participate?
Anyone who wants to honor and memorialize EMS providers may participate! Most of our participants are somehow connected with EMS but all types participate, including: family members of those we honor, hairstylists, physicians, and teachers to name a few. If you want to participate in this memorial event, we want you!
I don’t ride a bike. How can I get involved?
We can always use help on our Support and Gear (SAG) team. Affectionately known as “Wingmen.” our SAG participants are essential for riders to complete our events. Common tasks of SAG participants include marking routes, directing riders, setting up rest stops for riders to refuel and hydrate, making sure luggage gets from one hotel to the next. Wingmen are also our biggest cheerleaders throughout the event!
How do I register?
Each event has its own separate registration link within the tab for that event. Fill it out and complete the payment and you’re all set.
How much is the registration fee?
Rider registration has recently changed. The NEMSMBR has reduced the registration fees and allowed for social media platform fundraising. The registration fees and fundraising minimum goals are contingent on the number of days of participation. Review the rates on the registration sites.
Wingmen: Support registration fee is waived but a minimum fundraising goal is still established.
When does registration close?
Each route will have a designated final date to accept pre-registrations listed on the individual event page. The pre-registration deadline is the last day the NEMSMBR guarantees jersey and t-shirt sizes. Riders and Wingmen may register up to one week prior to the start of the route. Anyone seeking to participate fewer than 7 days before the route begins will require permission of the Route Coordinator. New registrants must arrive at the starting hotel on the day they are participating by 6:15 a.m..
The NEMSMBR reserves the right to close registration at any time if the number of participants exceeds the capacity for the event planning. If registration is closed, it will be noted on the NEMSMBR website.
-Greater than 60 days prior to start of the event for which you are registered = full refund.
-Between 30 and 60 days prior to start the event for which you are registered= 50% refund
-No refund given with fewer than 30 days prior to start of the event for which you are registered.
Can I transfer my registration?
You may transfer your registration up to 72 hours prior to the start of the event. There will be no “splitting” of registration for multi-day events.
What does my registration fee cover?
- Participant liability insurance
- Riders: jersey if riding three days or more, if riding fewer than three days, participants may purchase (pre-ordered at time of registration) a jersey.
- Support: high visibility t-shirt (if you are doing three or more days, you will receive a second high visibility t-shirt. For more than five days, support personnel may receive a long sleeve t-shirt or sweatshirt (depending on availability).
- Snacks, water, supplemental hydration and sustenance while riding or working (breakfast and lunch are often provided at no cost to participants).
*It does not pay for your lodging (The ride makes every effort to find best rates for lodging).
*It does not cover your transportation to/from the start/end of the route.
Can I raise funds to cover my expenses?
Yes, you can. Donations made directly to the organization and not intended for registration fees may be tax deductible, as the National EMS Memorial Bike Ride is recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization. Consult with your state or tax preparer for further information about credit for charitable contributions. Donations to NEMSMBR may be sent directly to the organization by sending a check to NEMSMBR | 5010 E. Trindle Rd | Mechanicsburg, PA 17050.
The jersey I ordered doesn’t fit. Can I exchange it?
Depending on availability it may be possible to exchange sizes at the event. Each person who pre-registered will get the size they ordered. Once all pre-registered jerseys are distributed, exchanges may be possible. We guarantee you the size you ordered by pre-registration deadlines. We will make every attempt to have jerseys for those who register after the pre=registration deadline, but we cannot guarantee a jersey or your size if you didn’t’ pre-register.
How do I determine my Jersey size?
Please reference the size chart at http://www.jakroo.com/sizing/. Refer to the sizing chart for the Fondo SS jersey in the “relaxed” fit.
Do I need to bring a bike or can I rent one?
We expect that each rider will have a proper fitting bicycle in good condition on the night before each ride begins. We do not rent or sell bikes, and we do not have a sponsoring bike shop. If needed, you should be able to arrange to rent a bike, and perhaps have it delivered to your starting hotel location. Remember that you will be responsible for its return. Consult Cyclist’s Yellow Pages at www.adventurecycling.org for more information about where to rent bikes and what options you have for renting a bike in your home town, and having it shipped to the start of this ride.
I’m flying in. Where do I ship my bike?
You can call the starting hotel and ask if they can receive your bike. If they are unable to (some hotels are better about this than others) you can ship it to the nearest FedEx location and they will hold it for you. For more information about shipping, packing and otherwise traveling with your bike we recommend the resources at www.bikeflights.com.
Is this a road ride? Off road? Can I bring my mountain bike?
For the most part, this ride takes place on paved city and country roads. While some unexpected detours, bike trails or paths on our route may be hard packed dirt or limestone, the bulk of our ride is on pavement. We highly discourage fat (all terrain) tires. If you only own a mountain bike and really want to ride it 100 miles each day, we recommend you visit your local bike shop and purchase some skinny (road appropriate) tires for this ride. In general, touring, road, or cross hybrid bikes are a built for longer distance cycling. They usually offer more handlebar positions and a more aerodynamic (energy efficient) riding stance.
What is the Ride like on an average day?
Each route will be a little different due to geography specific to each event. Riders will all start from the designated hotel and depart as a group. We ride in two formats: touring and parade. We use parade format for going through cities and into large ceremonies. In parade format we ride in close formation side by side and are escorted by a motor vehicle. In touring format, we ride at our own pace in bike lanes, shared roadways, and occasionally paved bike paths. We plan for most of our mileage to be in touring format. Most events average 75-85 miles/day. You don’t have to ride every mile and if you’re worn out feel free to hop in a support vehicle. Our motto is: “Everyone makes it to the finish.” We’ll do what it takes to help everyone accomplish that goal.
Here’s what a sample Day-At-A-Glance looks like:
How fast is this ride? Will I be able to keep up?
The National EMS Memorial Bike Ride is not a race. The purpose of the ride is to celebrate the lives of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, and those still working in EMS. We want everyone to be able to participate and reach their goals safely. In order to cover the distances each day an average pace of 12-14 miles per hour will be necessary. This pace is not one that most people can do “off the couch” but it is not overly fast. With training, we find most people can accomplish this pace without causing themselves injury. If you fall behind to the point that you will not be able to finish by the time the route closes for the day, you will be politely asked to jump into a SAG vehicle.
How do I train for this?
Information on training is on the Training page of this website. You will find links to training sites and tips on what to do to get ready for the ride. We suggest you train, train, train – do something, anything, every day from the time you read this until the day you join us.
Where do we sleep?
Participants (riders and support staff) spend the night at pre-determined hotels. When you register you will be provided with a list of hotels. These locations will be the start and stop locations for each day or each route. Lodging costs are not covered by the registration fee and will generally run you about $120/room nightly. We recommend roommates to help keep your costs low. You are free to make your own lodging arrangements, but you are responsible for getting to your lodging at night and back and ready to begin the event by the designated time the next morning.
I need to know the exact route. What is it?
Route information can be found on Ride with GPS. The exact route of each event from each year may not be available until a couple of weeks before the event starts. Even once it is posted the route is subject to change.
We choose the start and stop points for the entire event about a year in advance but the day to day stops and routing is subject to the Route Coordinator and their team’s discretion. Each year the route gets altered for many reasons including: road conditions, traffic, ceremonies, and scenic exploration to name a few.
What about food? I’m hungry just thinking about all of this riding!
Breakfast and lunch will be provided most days. A combination of meals will be used: some days breakfast may be continental breakfast provided by the hotel we are staying at or a cold breakfast put together by our Wingmen. Lunches are a combination of donations provided by agencies along our route and various meals put together by our Wingmen. When meals are donated by agencies we do not have control over what is provided however, if you have dietary restrictions please let us know during registration and we will try to have alternatives available for you. Throughout the day there will be snacks available at the formal rest stops. These usually include energy bars, fruit, electrolyte drinks and water. Each SAG vehicle will have a small supply of snacks and water for those emergency situations. Limited availability of energy gels/gummy/bar type supplements may be available. If you have one brand or flavor you are partial to, we recommend you bring it with you. Dinner is often on your own but occasionally we are able to secure a donated dinner for the group and it will be announced with prior to 24 hours notice. Each hotel will be able to provide you with a list of restaurants that are nearby.
Many riders/teams will also tap into their local resources for donations stuff such as sports drinks, energy gels, nutrition bars, etc. Donations for the whole group are ALWAYS welcome.
What should I bring?
A detailed list will be provided several weeks prior to the event for registrants. A generalized list can be found on the Training and Equipment page of this website. While this is a fully supported ride, riders’ luggage is packed onto moving trucks every morning to be transferred from the start point of a day to the end point of a day. Riders will not have access to luggage during the day, and should plan accordingly to have everything they will need for the day on their person and/or bike.
What Support does the NEMSMBR provide?
- Luggage transportation – Every morning you will load your luggage (limited to two bags per riders) into our luggage truck. Ride volunteers will make sure it is waiting for you at the destination hotel for that day.
- SAG (Support and Gear/Guidance) vehicles patrol the route to pick-up riders who require assistance. Each SAG vehicle includes friendly volunteers who can assist with first aid and transport of riders/bikes to the nearest rest stop or the finish if necessary.
- Ride marshals – Experienced cyclists ride along side you offering words of encouragement and route information if needed. Ride marshals also can help with minor bike adjustments, first aid and minor roadside repair. (Make sure you bring at least two spare inner tubes that fit your bike).
- Route maps – You will receive route maps via email prior to the event. The routes will be well marked and, when possible, traffic control will be provided for safety or routing purposes.
- Rest stops – We offer fully-staffed rest stops with snacks and toilet facilities every 15-25 miles. These are often hosted by local EMS departments/rescue squads and include interesting information about the local EMS and law enforcement agencies. We will try to have “quick” stops every 10 miles – these are brief stops and most likely will not have full facilities.
- Limited mechanical support – Some limited bike mechanical support is available at the start and finish of each day. If your bike needs major repair we are often in urban areas and can help arrange transport to a local bike shop as needed.
While we expect that most riders come prepared to bike the entire route each day, we are prepared to support you if mechanical or physical problems prevent you from completing a stage of the ride.
Can I bring my own support team? Will there be someone to shuttle my vehicle?
We welcome volunteers to join the SAG team for the entire ride. Unfortunately additional vehicles on the route create safety hazards, logistical problems and additional vehicular traffic congestion. We do not offer shuttle services, and we cannot spare volunteers to drive your personal vehicle.
We pool our volunteer and support resources for increased efficiency. If you have departmental vehicles, staff, family, friends and coworkers who are interested in volunteering, please contact the Route Coordinator about participation. We strongly discourage Riders from bringing their own support team and vehicles.
Do you need medical support?
Medical support is not necessary. We are an EMS based event, but we utilize local resources in the event of an unplanned emergency. REMEMBER, EMTs are governed by state protocol and authority; your skills (no matter how great they are) are not reciprocal across all state lines or even counties in some areas.
Can someone drive my car and travel with me on the route?
This is a fully supported ride, we have designated vehicles that come with us, but it is not feasible to have more than necessary. If you do have someone wanting to travel with you, they can register as a support person and they will be assigned a task during the days, travel in our designated vehicles, and meet you at the daily end points. We would love to have them – but not your car.
Is there somewhere to park my car at the start/end point?
We cannot guarantee parking for your vehicle. This is something that you will have to arrange independently. If opportunities present themselves, that information will be relayed to participants.
Do I have to ride back too?
All riders are responsible for their own transportation to the route’s starting point and back home. We do have some folks that return to the starting points and depending on need, we can try and arrange some cheap options to accommodate Riders’ needs. Let us know if you need a ride back to the start when you register. DO NOT COUNT ON THIS OPTION – we will try and assist you in working your plans out with others in similar situations.
Are there any family activities?
We don’t schedule activities for family members, but we certainly get to see some beautiful and exciting parts of the country and visitation of local attractions as time permits is encouraged.
Can friends join me at night?
We don’t need to know, nor do we monitor what you do in your free time – but if they are going to hang during the day with our SAG team while you ride they will be put to work and made to register as SAG personnel (liability and accountability). Same goes if they decide to ride, they will be required to register as a Rider and required to adhere to our regulations.
What is the NEMSMBR’s relationship to the National EMS Memorial Service?
We are a separate organization from the National EMS Memorial Service (NEMSMS). We have our own leadership, mission, vision, and values.
We do support the NEMSMS by riding to and attending their service with grace and honor. We will ride for the known inductees of the NEMSMS, but we also ride for individuals who may not be NEMSMS inductees but are known as EMS providers who have died, become ill or injured regardless of reason and circumstances.
What is the NEMSMBR’s relationship to the National EMS Memorial Foundation?
We are a separate organization from the National EMS Memorial Foundation. We have our own leadership, mission, vision, and values.
As with all organizations that seek to honor and memorialize Line of Duty Deaths we support the mission of both the Foundation and the Service.
Why so many routes?
The Board of Directors decided that it was important to keep a strong presence during National EMS Week which is why we host two events during that week (East Coast and Southern). The East Coast event travels through some of the largest urban areas of our country and the Southern route travels through some very remote areas that rely solely on volunteers to provide EMS service. These two events highlight the broad spectrum of EMS response.
The Colorado event is organized in support of and travels to the Air Medical Memorial and National EMS Memorial Service.
The West Coast route was organized to enable more people to participate who cannot make the trip across the country or are unable to participate during EMS Week due to other obligations.
How do I create my own event?
Contact the Board of Directors to create or promote events in honor of the fallen under the National EMS Memorial Bike Ride, Inc organization.