A Return to Riding

Almost everybody rides a bike at some point in their childhood before parting ways with their two-wheeled sidekick when a driver’s license hits their pocket. Eventually, many of us return to our childhood friend.

Some return to their pedals to get in shape, others because they need a challenge, and others just to get outside again. For Baileys Harbor resident Sam Perlman, his return to the saddle five years ago was a little more random.

“My wife (Mariah Goode) and I had registered for a bike rack when we got married,” said Perlman, a father of two young boys. “But I wasn’t a biker. It took me another year before I finally put the rack on the car, and when I did, I put a bike on it and thought, ‘Hey, that looks pretty good. I should go for a ride.’”

A friend had an old bike they weren’t using and Perlman soon got back on the saddle in a serious way. In 2010 Perlman, who spends his days helping to spur business on the peninsula as the Economic Development Manager at the Door County Economic Development Corporation, put over 1,200 miles on his entry-level Trek rode bike, including a June spin on the 50-mile Ride for Nature course.

“I’ve done the Ridges Ride the last four years,” he said. “It’s a great early-season ride, and it starts and stops right across the street from my house. Plus, it benefits an organization that we support. We’re grateful to have the Ridges Sanctuary in our neighborhood and to have the executive director and his family right down our street – and his kids available to babysit for us.”

Perlman is a regular participant in the Wednesday night group rides in Door County, a moderate, no-drop ride with a varying route. He also returns to his hometown of Chicago on Memorial Day weekend to do the Bike the Drive on Lakeshore Drive.

“That’s a great family ride,” he said.

This June 18, Perlman again expects to make the short commute to the start of the Ride for Nature to Benefit the Ridges Sanctuary, getting a great start on the summer riding season while contributing to a great organization.