What’s Up With the New Name?
“Wheelmen” a century ago and more was a very progressive term. Today you look at our photos and we tend to look like a MAMIL (men in lycra) club. However in the zenith of our club, when we had over 1000 members decades ago, we were very much a co-ed club.
Whether right or wrong, members of that generation very much thought of “Wheelmen” as a quite progressive term. Not only were Wheelmen at the forefront of the evolution of paved roads as a political movement, but bicycles, women’s suffrage, and the feminism of the day overlapped and intermingled.
Explaining without defending it, our club has been slow to change our name, as our members viewed themselves of that proud legacy than went back more than a century.
Today (and for the last several decade or more), “Wheelmen” has grated on the ears of people that aren’t drinking the cool-aid.
We kicked off a slow name change yesterday at the 2021 Fall Picnic, with a banner with the new name “Western Pennsylvania Bicycle Club”. While our legal name will remain Western Pennsylvania Wheelmen, expect to see our online presence to slowly morph. We likely will use WPW for some time. But we are transitioning our web domain from wpwbikeclub.org to wpabike.club. Perhaps our new acronym will be WPABC.