Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on August 5th, 2009 at 3:18 pm
The mission to make Oregon “The Land Bicycles Dream About” has taken a big step forward. A new website to promote biking in Oregon and to inspire people to get out and ride launched yesterday. Check it out at RideOregonRide.com.
The site was first pegged as a priority during a brainstorming session at the Oregon Bike Summit back in April of 2008. Since then, Travel Oregon has spearheaded an effort to make it happen. They formed a committee of local bike advocates and experts for guidance, hired interactive brand strategy agency Substance to build it, and invested the money to make it a reality.
For Travel Oregon, the site is a way to make biking a larger and more profitable component of Oregon’s $1 billion dollar outdoor tourism industry.
Attendees of this year’s Oregon Bike Summit got a sneak peek at the site. As of yesterday it’s available to the public.
The site boasts an abundance of special tools to find, rate, and then save and share your favorite rides, interactive maps, social media features, a ride and event calendar, editorial articles, photographs and more.
From the home page, visitors can choose whatever type of biking they’re interested in and then be whisked away to an interactive map with an inset list of “Featured” rides, or they can select to view all trails in the database.
Visitors can search for events and rides not just by riding type, but by region or city. There are also suggested itineraries depending on how many days you’d like to travel. And this isn’t just about rural riding. Select to see a list of rides from Portland and you’ll get information on Bridge Pedal, Sunday Parkways, the Tour de Lab, and more.
Substance and their partners have worked for months to build the site’s content. Their work has resulted in a one-stop-shop where anyone can read and learn more about everything Oregon has to offer as a bike riding destination — whether you like to ride fast, slow, on-road, off-road, in the city, or in the country.
The idea is to continually accept new ride suggestions and articles, but that presents a challenge for Substance and Travel Oregon. They currently have no dedicated source of ongoing funds to maintain the site. Without someone continuously moderating and polishing new content, the site won’t be able to live up to its potential. Hopefully a source of funds for this purpose can be found.
I’ve been poking around the site for a few days now and have been totally impressed. Very nice to look at, and loaded with neat functionality well thought-out features. This is an important step for biking in Oregon and should have a real impact on making our state the premier two-wheeled travel destination.
Take a look for yourself at RideOregonRide.com and let us know what you think.