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Crafty Cow Ride Q&A with Finish Line Events

A new event in Southern Wisconsin allows participants to get some great biking in, then drink beer!

Craig Schaning

The springs and summers in Wisconsin are littered with events self-driven athletes compete in. Starting off with the Crazylegs Classic in April, those who want to partake in running or biking over long (sometimes very long) distances can also enter the Ironman Wisconsin in early September or even the Brewers Mini-Marathon + 10K later that month.

But is there an event that's non-competitive and combines athletic feats with, well, a free beer and burger after completing the ride?

A new event, the Crafty Cow Ride, is set for July 11th in Oconomowoc, Wis. -- just about 45 minutes east of Madison -- which combines either a 20-mile or 40-mile course with one free burger and one beer (soda for those under 21) from the Crafty Cow after the event.

We spoke with the event's organizer, Craig Schaning of Finish Line Events, to talk more about the event.

B5Q: Where did the idea of the Crafty Cow Ride come from?

Craig Schaning (CS): I've wanted to start my own business for a long time and have always had an interest in race productions. I wanted my first event to be a fun, non-competitive bike ride as these are rising in popularity and I have enjoyed participating in these type of events. Bike rides of this nature tend to be more laid back with a fun, backyard party type feel.

B5Q: How did the partnership with the Crafty Cow begin?

CS: I wanted to partner with a young and fresh brewery or restaurant in the Oconomowoc area since this is where I grew up, and I heard about the Crafty Cow from a family member. I ate at the restaurant to see what it was like -- and in addition to the amazing burgers and beer selection, I loved the atmosphere. After that, I contacted the Crafty Cow owner and asked if he would be interested in partnering with me on this event. We worked out the details and are excited to produce the inaugural Crafty Cow Ride this summer.

B5Q: There's a 20-mile and 40-mile ride participants can partake in. What will be the main differences besides the distance?

CS: The 20-mile route is a mostly flat family-friendly loop with one rest stop providing food and refreshments. The 40-mile route is slightly more challenging and has a few gentle rolling hills. There are two rest stops on the 40-mile route including the Bicycle Doctor, a cool bike shop in Dousman, Wis.

B5Q: What type of planning goes into this? Have you had to work with city, county officials to confirm routes, block off roads, etc.?

CS: There is a lot of behind-the-scenes work that goes into planning a ride of this nature. And yes, I've worked with the City of Oconomowoc and police department to acquire the necessary permits and ensure the event is property executed.

B5Q: Where can participants go to register, and what are the costs?

CS: Participants can register at this website. The ride is $40 until June 30th and $45 from July 1st to July 11th. As a special promotion for Bucky's 5th Quarter readers, participants can enter the promo code 'Bucky' for $10 off when they register.

For more information, please check out their Facebook page and the Finish Line Events website.