BMW Motorrad USA will be the title sponsor of the Sisters’ Centennial Motorcycle Ride, a cross country motorcycle adventure for women, commemorating the 100th anniversary of Adeline and Augusta Van Buren’s historic motorcycle ride across the United States.
“It was a much different era for women motorcyclists in 1916,” said event organizer Alisa Clickenger. “With World War I looming, the Van Buren sisters wanted to demonstrate that women had what it took to be dispatch riders in the Army, and their transcontinental journey on a pair of motorcycles made U.S. history.
Making the motorcycle event and all BMW showing, BMW Motorrad USA will provide motorcycles for the ride organizer and staff, and BMW of North America will provide BMW X5 chase vehicles and a 7 Series photography-equipped vehicle along the entire route.
The celebratory ride will kick off on July 3rd from the same area the Van Buren sisters started their journey in 1916, in in Brooklyn, New York and conclude on July 23 with a group ride into San Francisco, California.
“This was quite an accomplishment for two courageous women at a time when few roads were paved, post-Victorian attitudes were in full flare and women did not yet have the right to vote,” said Clickenger. “This ride is intended to honor their achievement and promote the growth of female motorcyclists within the motorcycling community.”
It’s hoped the transcontinental journey will raise awareness and funds for two women’s charities: Final Salute, Inc., a national women’s veteran’s organization, which provides temporary and permanent housing for the over 500,000 homeless female veterans in the U.S.; and the Women’s Coalition of Motorcyclists, which supports scholarships to increase the number of female instructors and coaches for road, dirt and track motorcycle rider training.
“We are delighted to commemorate this historic motorcycling accomplishment by two courageous women as BMW celebrates its own 100th anniversary,” commented Sarah Schilke, National Motorcycle Manager, BMW Motorrad USA. “As BMW celebrates a century of engineering innovation and industry benchmarks, it seemed entirely fitting to partner with the Sisters’ Centennial Motorcycle Ride as a tribute to the Van Buren sisters, who were the first women to climb Pikes Peak and traverse the continental United States on individual motorcycles.”
More than 100 women riders, including Adeline’s great-granddaughter, Sofié Ruderman, and Sarah Van Buren, great-niece of Adeline and Augusta, will participate. Riders will follow the Van Burens’ 1916 route as closely as possible, promoting women as role models and raising funds for charities supporting women. Community events and “Meet and Greets” are planned along the way.
“We appreciate BMW’s commitment to the female riding community, not only through its partnership but also through its recent model enhancements to accommodate women riders of all sizes,” said event organizer Alisa Clickenger. “By applying advanced technology and design across one of the industry’s broadest range of models, there is truly a motorcycle for every rider within the BMW lineup.
Women have several options for participation, including a fully supported tour, as well as self-guided tours of the entire route or individual segments.