Midnight Bike Ride
Hog Butcher for the World,
Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat,
Player with Railroads and the Nation's Freight Handler;
Stormy, husky, brawling,
City of the Big Shoulders.
Since 1989, Loyola University history professor Timothy Gilfoyle has conducted a "midnight bike ride" for his students and friends. The event introduces students to major themes in American history by visiting various historic sites in Chicago.
Due to unseasonably cold weather (33 degrees with snow in the forecast), the Spring 2018 Midnight Bike Ride (scheduled for Thursday, April 19) has been cancelled. Please join us for our next ride this fall! In the meantime, check out highlights from the Fall 2017 Midnight Bike Ride on the YouTube Series "I Am Your Neighbor."
The adventure returns at 9 pm on Thursday, September 13 in the plaza outside the Norville Athletics Center (6526 N. Winthrop Ave.) and across the street from Loyola Hall (1110 W. Loyola Ave.) on the Lake Shore Campus of Loyola University. Riders normally return to campus between 6 a.m. and 7 a.m. the following day. The ride takes place in the late evening and morning hours in order to avoid daytime and rush-hour traffic and because participants always see and learn more on a bike than during a bus ride or walking tour. Riders pedal at a leisurely pace (this is not a race), frequently stopping at important historical and architectural sites. Pit stops to eat, drink, and visit the rest room are frequent. All Loyola students, faculty and alumni are invited, and they are encouraged to bring family and friends.
Participants are urged to dress warmly, preferably wearing layers of clothing in order to adapt to the frequently changing Chicago weather. Gloves are also recommended in the event of cold weather, particularly in the early morning hours. Participants should bring money to pay for food and drink, and are also required to sign a legal waiver of release prior to the ride.
Don’t have a bike? No problem! Loyola students may rent bikes for $20 (discounted from the regular $36 charge) from Chainlinks located at 1100 W. Sheridan Road on the ground level in the Parking Structure next to Campus Transportation on the Lake Shore Campus. A sign is displayed in the entry way to the garage with Chainlink's name on it. Bike reservations are available online at www.chainlinksluc.com. All reservations will be held for 48 hours from the day that they are made. Renters need to bring a valid driver’s license or student ID and method of payment. Chainlinks highly encourages students to reserve a bike online to expedite the rental process. Bikes are also available without reservation, but the process will just take longer. Finally, daily rentals are valid for 24 hours: if a rental is processed at 2pm, the bike should be returned the following business day at 2pm.
Past bike rides have visited the following places:
Unicom Cooling Plants on State Street and Wacker Drive
Site of the Haymarket Tragedy of 1886
Lower Wacker Drive
Where the Chicago Fire of 1871 began
Pre-1855 "Sunken Houses"
Bucktown and Wicker Park
"First" Apartment Building in Chicago
Prairie Avenue Historic District
St. Ignatius College Preparatory School (origins of Loyola University)
World's First "Skyscraper District"
St. Valentines Day "Massacre" site
Oldest Railroad Station in Chicago
Chinatown’s On Leong Merchants Association
Oldest House in Chicago
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Thursday, April 18, 2019
Thusday, September 12, 2019