The Winter Cycling Congress will be held 2-4 February, 2016 in Minneapolis and Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA. This is a three-day professional development event uniting a diverse and international group of people with a shared vision of increasing bicycling and walking among people of all ages and abilities through the winter. Now, in its fourth year, the Winter Cycling Congress aims to deliver a vibrant exchange about the use of the bicycle in a season when there are real and perceived barriers preventing people from realizing all the benefits year-round cycling can support in terms of health, wealth, happiness and equality.

This Congress includes stakeholders and thought leaders from many areas, including bicycle and pedestrian planning, Safe Routes to School, civil and traffic engineering, public works, urban design, landscape architecture, public health, journalism, the arts and many other areas. Bringing together people who live in all different types of winter climates and work with or rides bikes allows for the exchange of academic research, practical experience and best practices. This year, delegates will have the chance to learn and experience winter cycling in a place where the season is celebrated and winter cycling is on the rise.

Cycling across the Stone Arch Bridge in Minneapolis. Photo by Connor Cox.

Cycling across the Stone Arch Bridge in Minneapolis. Photo by Connor Cox.

Minneapolis and Saint Paul

This year’s congress will be held in the United States for the first time ever in one of North America’s most bicycle-friendly communities. In the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul and across the State of Minnesota there is a strong tradition of conservation, active lifestyle and celebration of winter. The Twin Cities are home to 11 colleges and universities, a strong bicycle industry, innovative professionals and much more. The unique and ever-evolving cycling network combines off-street bicycle paths passing through city and national parks with formerly under-utilized industrial infrastructure, offering a dynamic environment for experiential learning. Outside of the Twin Cities, innovative trail grooming practices are being pioneered to enable more fat biking and providing opportunities for growing winter tourism. The Winter Cycling Congress 2016 will celebrate the diversity of the North American cycling movement while also welcoming inspiration, best practices and lessons from bicycle-friendly communities around the world.

Winter Cycling Federation

WinterCyclingFederationLogoThe Winter Cycling Congress is a project of the Winter Cycling Federation, a foundation established in 2013. The Winter Cycling Federation was established by President Timo Perälä in the aftermath of the first Winter Cycling Congress in Oulu, Finland to continue the exchange of knowledge. The mission of the Winter Cycling Federation is to promote winter cycling around the world. The Winter Cycling Congress was held in Winnipeg, Canada in 2014 and Leeuwarden, the Netherlands in 2015.

The Winter Cycling Congress 2016 is presented by title sponsor The Center for Prevention at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota. The conference is being organized by the Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota and a Twin Cities Host Committee in collaboration with the Winter Cycling Federation.