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Teams are an amazing part of Bike MS! Each year nearly 80% of Bike MS cyclists make a bigger impact by riding as part of a team. Use these ideas and checklists to build a successful team.
Our team of was formed because I was diagnosed with MS in March 2012. Since then, our team has grown to over 100 participants and over 27 living with MS. It's not about the distance; it's about the fundraising, and the ride is a celebration of your fundraising success."–Chris Potter, Team Wingman, Co-Captain
Register first in order to create a team. Be sure to pick a creative name for your team.
If you registered as an individual, but would like to join or start a team, please contact us with the name of the team you'd like to join or start (in addition to the team fundraising goal, if starting a team) and we'll make it happen.
Use this detailed guide to help you be a successful Team Captain for Bike MS.
Use this Bike MS Goal Setting Sheet to set a team goal that will motivate everyone to do their best.
Activate your team by setting up your team page in the online Participant Center. Use the Participant Center Guide for step by step instructions on utilizing the team captain resources available in your Participant Center, such as updating your team goal, updating your Team page, sending recruitment and team emails, tracking your progress, managing your roster, and much more!
Recruit more people to the team. Enlist your colleagues, friends, family members, and neighbors. They can register by selecting "Join a Team" during the registration process and searching for your team name. You, as Team Captain, can also use the "Join My Team" Suggested Message template from the Email tool in your Participant Center, and the new team members can register through a link provided in the template. Leading a national or corporate team? Use this Sample Team Article to announce your team in a company newsletter or intranet. Be sure to also read the Corporate Team section of the 2017 Bike MS Team Captain Guide for more information.
Raising money for the National MS Society is the main reason we host Bike MS. Increase team fundraising by asking all members to make a self-donation to their personal fundraising. Also, plan team fundraisers to get all members involved. See the Team Success section for fundraising ideas for teams.
Forward along any pertinent information that you get from the National MS Society to your team members regarding team/fundraising contests, event details, and your team ranking.
Once team members have begun registering, send out emails to the team, welcome new members, congratulate those who reach fundraising milestones, and create fundraising challenges for your team members.
Our national Bike MS apparel sponsor, Primal Wear, has great solutions for team apparel and a 15% give-back program. Create a team jersey all team members can wear when training to promote your team and Bike MS!
Are you meeting somewhere special? Are you wearing team jerseys or coordinated outfits? Are you hosting a tent in the Team Village? Send the details to your team members so they feel included and can have as much fun as possible on event weekend!
In addition to the Bike MS Staff assigned to work with you and help your team year-round, see the various tools below that will help your team achieve success this year!
Team Captain Guide
All you need to know about getting your team started, recruiting team members, and fundraising.
Team Captain Goal Setting Sheet
Use this document to answer key questions about your team's goal for the year. Share with your team.
Team Goal Poster
Track your team's fundraising and recruitment progress for everyone to see.
Participant Center Guide
Utilize this guide for step-by-step instructions on utilizing the team captain resources available in your Participant Center, such as updating your team goal, updating your Team page, sending recruitment and team emails, tracking your progress, managing your roster, and much more! Log in and get started today!
Materials Order Form – Order FREE rack cards, trading cards, posters and other materials to promote your team and recruit members. NEW this year, you can print PDFS of promotional materials!
Participant Center Guide (pdf) - Utilize this guide for step by step instructions on utilizing the team captain resources available in your Participant Center, such as updating your team goal, updating your Team page, sending recruitment and team emails, tracking your progress, managing your roster and much more! Log in and get started today!
City to Shore Logos & Bike MS Digital Downloads - Download current year City to Shore logos, Bike MS Facebook cover photos, customizable email signatures, wallpaper, banners and more under the Ride Promotion tab.
Team Captain Guide to Media Relations (pdf) - Help spread the word about your team and the ride with these tools.
Team Housing Request Form - Teams can quickly make their accommodations request through Access Ocean City by completing this form.
Start Location Information - Team members don’t have to start at the same location. View the different start locations and times here.
Ocean City team experience - Make the best out of your weekend in Ocean City with these team housing and other Ocean City resources to help make your Ocean City team experience the best ever.
Know Your Networks
Use this document to uncover all of the networks that could help you recruit more team members and raise money!
Download current year Bike MS logos, Bike MS Facebook cover photos, customizable email signatures, and more.
We love our teams and offer a variety of support to ensure your team will be successful.See below for 2016 information. Updates are coming soon!
> Abundance of team captains resources, tips and tools, including the Team Captains Guide (visit the ‘Captain Resources’ Tab for many more!)
> One-on-one help from your team coordinator to: answer questions, meet with you and team leaders, provide guidance, visit your company for a Q&A session or sign up, and much more!
> Team Awards & special top recruitment and fundraising team recognition throughout the season (visit the ‘Team Recognition' tab for more information)
> Special team fundraising and recruitment incentives throughout the summer months. These are featured in various issues of our e-news.
> Rider number pick-up session in September for teams with 25 or more members.
> Opportunity to book team housing in Ocean City
> Team photos at both the PATCO start and Ocean City finish lines
> Opportunity to rent a team tent:
- At the PATCO Start: Create a meeting point for your team members, hand out rider numbers and/or team jerseys and more! Teams with 50 or more members have the opportunity to rent a tent at the PATCO start. Team tent location will be posted the week of the ride. Space is limited, so we will allow no exceptions to the requirements noted below. A map of team tent locations will be posted later in September. Questions? Contact your assigned Bike MS staff or firstname.lastname@example.org.
**If a volunteer is also a cyclist, and has registered as a cyclist, he or she will not be able to complete the online volunteer form and will need to contact us at 800-445-BIKE to complete the volunteer registration process.
- At the PATCO finish: Five team vendor tents are available on a first come, first served basis. Tents are offered for a discounted vendor fee of $150. Vendor space is available to teams that would like to sell or promote items as part of their current year City to Shore fundraising with proceeds from the items sold to benefit their team and the ride. If interested, contact email@example.com. No reservations will be accepted after this date.
With so many amazing teams, how can we not recognize them throughout the season!? Team recognition comes in many forms, such as:
Team Achievement Awards and Top Team Award Winners are announced at the Awards Dinner each December and included in the December City to Shore Update email. Captains honored with an award will receive an emailed invitation to the Awards Dinner in late October or November. Encourage your team members to aim high and win one of the coveted team awards.
Check out what these City to Shore teams are doing in their effort to help create a world free of MS. Get some great ideas from other top teams regarding fundraising, recruitment, bike safety, and much more!
Raising Caine’s mission is “to make a difference so that in the future no one will have to hear the devastating words 'You have MS'.” After winning the Outstanding First Year Team Award in 2012, Raising Caine’s team captain Trish McFadden, in her 10th year riding, has set her sights even higher this year. Click here to read more about how and why the team was created, and how their fundraising techniques that secured this award in 2012.
Share these National MS Society videos on social media or via email to recuit additional members to your team. Show them what Bike MS is all about!
Primal Wear is the official apparel sponsor of Bike MS. As part of their ongoing commitment to the National MS Society, Primal will donate 15% of your team's custom apparel order back to your team's fundraising account. Learn More about Custom Jerseys ›
Primal also donates 15% of all Bike MS-branded cycling apparel and accessory purchases back to Bike MS! Bike MS-branded apparel is sold online exclusively at primalwear.com.
Stay tuned to this section for important team news and incentives for Bike MS!
Each month, team captains receive a special issue of our e-news highlighting information that’s important to them. View e-news archives and sign up if you are not currently receiving these.
Whether you measure success by the size of your team or the amount fundraised, the more the merrier is our motto!
Team members can be anybody: Family members, friends, co-workers, or even neighbors. Whether you're a corporate team or a friends-and-family team, just be sure to recruit everyone you know.
Be bold! The first step is to ask. Enthusiasm and spirit are contagious—your friends and family will want to join the movement when they see how committed and excited you are.
Think outside your neighborhood. Use this experience as a meaningful reason to reunite friends and family who live around the nation. They can fundraise and train at their homes, and then join you on the day of the event. Keep each other motivated by email or phone, or surprise each other by sending care packages. A reunion on the day of the event can create a special memory!
(Leading isn't your cup of tea? Convince someone else you know to lead the group, or join an existing team.)
The benefits of forming a team include being eligible for contests throughout the year as well as being eligible for team awards at the end of the season. We highly encourage you to recruit as many people as possible to join you.
Fundraising comes more naturally when you make it personal. If your team is participating for someone living with MS, ask them to share their story when making donation requests. Always follow these stories with statements about the powerful progress we have made in helping people living with MS live their best lives. Another easy way to fundraise is through matching gifts, so be sure to ask anyone who donates to you if their company has a matching gifts program. The National MS Society offers a quick lookup for known Matching Gift programs.
Some ideas that work well for team fundraising:
As a team member (or team captain), you can fundraise like everyone else. Instead of your fundraising going directly to the overall team, we funnel it there through you first; when you turn in a check or receive a donation online, you get the individual credit for it and your team also receives credit for it. This allows you and your team to qualify for the individual clubs/awards and team awards. Check out other Fundraising Tips – Tools for more great ideas.
One of the biggest perks to forming a team is that you already have training partners. It's much harder to bypass training, hit the snooze button, or go for doughnuts when someone is counting on you to help them train. Training as a team keeps the momentum going and helps you support each other every step of the way. Check out our Training Resources section for more tips.
Make sure everyone on your team has reviewed our Rider Safety page to ensure a safe ride for your team.
Our events are about a community coming together to create a world free of MS and the accomplishment of a unique personal challenge! As a leader, you get the opportunity to remind your teammates of why they are participating. These are more than fundraising events - they are celebrations of how far we've come together.