Joy 2 Ride Benzie

How it all began…

As the Founder of Joy 2 Ride, I personally am no stranger to disability, having lived with birth defects and ongoing structural issues most of my life that slowly disabled me, but I learned firsthand the AMAZING difference a “simple ride” on the Betsie Valley Trail can make. It was truly liberating and life changing for me! The freedom that comes with cycling is truly AWEsome. I want to bring that JOY of being outdoors biking in our gorgeous area to young and old regardless of physical ability. The camaraderie between the passenger and the volunteer who “pilots” the bike will be beneficial in countless ways, not the mention the beauty of our area and the fresh air!

There are only 3 other programs in existence as models in the nation! We are only the 4th of it’s kind in the U.S.! (With a 5th starting now too!) It is definitely a growing trend! Programs exists in Nantucket, MA, another in Portland, ME, & one in Bloomington, IL – Healing Rides – which is where I drew my inspiration from initially. (There is now a 5th program beginning in Sequim WA too!)  These first programs grew very quickly in their areas. So ‐ Benzie will have this! We have an absolutely wonderful trail system, a community full of amazing people who value our fantastic area and the “great” outdoors, and have a passion for helping others enjoy life to the fullest, regardless of ability.

The goal is to continue to shape this new program in 2018, so that individuals living here or visiting the area can have the opportunity to get out on our AWESOME Betsie Valley Trail.

There are many steps to this process and we are well on our way but there will always be “need” for many things from volunteers, to fundraising, to T‐shirts, signs, and helmets, not to mention insurance, storage, etc. SO if you would like to get involved in ANY way, PLEASE contact us!

For more info or to get involved, please call or text 231‐651‐0434 or Email:

Thank you for your support!

Carol Kraak, Founder & President