On Sunday, June 30, area Jews and Muslims will share the road and their places of worship via bicycle tour of North shore Chicago-area mosques and synagogues.
The Jewish-Muslim Ride is the second in what Julie Hochstadter, of The Chainlink hopes will be a series of annual rides that share the faiths’ heritage and houses of worship. The Chainlink: A Chicago Bicycling Online Community, is managed by Hochstadter as a website that connects cyclists to biking news and events in Chicago.
“Last year’s ride in the city was a surprisingly huge success,” says Hochstadter. “I’d love to see two rides a year in different parts of the Chicago-land area.”
Inspiration for the ride came in the mid 2000s after Hochstadter participated in a ride that brought Arab and Jewish students together to raise money for an environmental school in Israel.
“The ride not only got me hooked on biking, but on the power of bringing people of different faiths together for a fun, shared goal,” she says.
This year’s ride is co-sponsored by The Jewish-Muslim Community Building Initiative (JMCBI) (an initiative of JCUA) and the Evanston Bicycle Club. Interfaith and bicycle organizations interested in partnering to bring common ground to Muslims and Jews are welcome to sponsor or ride.
Riders will meet at the The Muslim Community Center at noon and ride to several synagogues and mosques in Morton Grove, Skokie and Evanston for a 15-mile, family-friendly ride. There are plans to tour a LEED-certified synagogue in Evanston and for a kosher ice cream stop at Chocolate Shoppe in Skokie.
“Our hope is to find common ground, quite literally,” Hochstadter says. “And show unity by riding together. The more time we spend with one other, the more we can do to bring together the two faiths and fight stereotypes and, possibly make change.”
The Jewish-Muslim ride is open to riders of all abilities and all faiths.
About The Chainlink: With over 8,000 members, The Chainlink is Chicagoland’s premiere social media site for cyclists, from commuters to racers, from local aldermen and City of Chicago officials, to Peter Sagal of National Public Radio’s “Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me.”