If there’s ever a time to bike to work in the Quad-Cities, next week is it.

May 15-19 marks Bike to Work Week, and numerous organizations and businesses in the Quad-City area are participating in the nationwide campaign.

The events kick off this weekend and continue through the rest of next week, so pump up your tires, grab a helmet and get out there.

Here's what's happening:

1. Youth Bicycle Safety Day

Before summer begins, children can learn the basics of bicycling this weekend during a free safety session in Milan. Those who go will ride along a safety course and get fitted for a free helmet. The event, presented by the Milan Optimist Club, will run from 9-11 a.m. Saturday at the Rock Island County Extension offices, 321 W. 2nd Ave. Enjoy free hot dogs, chips, juice and enter the free drawing to win one of six new bicycles.

2. Get out and Trail

Explore the network of recreational trails this weekend on both sides of the Mississippi River and break at various stops for snacks and refreshments. The annual event, sponsored by the Bettendorf, Davenport, Moline and Rock Island parks and recreation departments, runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. For more information, go to bit.ly/2pdsGcw.

3. ‘Your bike is your fare’

In support of Quad-City cyclists, Bettendorf Transit, Davenport CitiBus and MetroLINK are joining forces by offering free rides to those who bike and bus next week. Bicycling as a form of transportation promotes better air quality and helps reduce wear and tear on roads in the area, among other benefits, according to the Bi-State Regional Commission. All fixed-route buses in the Quad-Cities are equipped with bicycle racks that can accommodate up to two bikes.

4. Calling all commuters

Beginning Monday morning, the Quad-Cities Bicycle Club will serve free snacks and drinks to helmet-wearing cyclists on their morning and afternoon commutes to work and school. Dean “Bareback” Mathias will set up the primary “energizing station” from 5:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday near the foot of the Mississippi River Trail ramp, just west of the Government Bridge in Davenport. On Friday, National Bike to Work Day, Mathias will transfer his spread to Bechtel Park, 499 E. 2nd St., Davenport. Interested volunteers can contact Mathias at 309-737-8429. Watch the QCBC's Facebook page for other specials at businesses during the week. 

5. Bike 'N Blend

Hy-Vee customers in the Quad-Cities can add a bit of exercise to their grocery shopping this month. Hop on a stationary smoothie-blending bicycle, and within a minute of pedaling, enjoy a healthy snack. Proceeds from the smoothie sales will benefit the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Beginning this weekend and continuing throughout May, the blender bike will appear at nine stores in Quad-City area, including the following locations: 

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• 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at 2900 Devils Glen Road, Bettendorf.

• 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, May 15-16, at 201 W. 10th Ave., Milan.

• 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, May 17, at 750 42nd Ave. Drive, Moline.

• 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, May 19, at 2200 W. Kimberly Road, Davenport.

6. Ride of Silence

Cyclists will remember Robert Moldenhauer, aka "The Can Man," during the Quad-Cities Bicycle Club's annual Ride of Silence. The slow-roll outing will begin at 6 p.m. Wednesday, May 17, at Schwiebert Riverfront Park in Rock Island. Participants should wear a helmet, bright-colored clothing and equip their bicycles with lights. The group will ride at a maximum speed of 12 mph for 8-10 miles. Other Ride of Silence events across the globe will honor those who have been injured or killed while cycling on public roadways.  

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