April 11, 2021

2021 Registration is Live!

We are excited to announce that Z Tour registration for 2021 is now live!

Z Tour Ride 2021, “Virtually Anywhere,” is to support Zearing Child Enrichment Center in Princeton, Illinois. Visit to get more information about the Child Care Program these funds support.

While this ride may look different than years past, we are excited to be able to offer some fun for our riders during these times!

Typically this ride is geared toward bicyclists. However, this year due to covid restrictions, we decided to open this up to all types of adventurers! Pick your distance and get active to show some love for Zearing Child Enrichment Center. Take it outdoors or keep it inside. Run, Walk, Bike, Kayak, or however else you exercise! Get together with a small group (socially distanced of course) or ‘go it alone!’ We have put together 2 different ways you can join us this year!

This year’s event will run between July 1 and July 17th, 2021. We will be featuring routes and distances to travel each weekend between July 1-July 17th. Please feel free to use any of the dates between July 1- July 17th to complete any adventure!

**Although we CANNOT hold our Z Tour Ride due to state mandates for events, if riders choose to come to Princeton the day of the Ride to enjoy the routes we have provided, we welcome you to our town**

1. SHOW AND GO- We know that the beautiful routes are a favorite for our riders, so we have prepared some routes to ride if you choose to come to Princeton, Illinois. You will find these at the links below! At this point, we do not plan to mark or sweep the routes, however, we may be able to provide this as the date gets closer! We will update as we know! Routes can be viewed here:

2. VIRTUALLY ANYWHERE- Ride any distance in your hometown or a favorite spot!

*Routes are subject to change as the date gets closer

*Routes will not be swept, marked, or have SAG support this year- please ride with caution.

2021 Ticket Options can be viewed and purchased here.

2021 Merchandise can be purchased here.

April 1, 2021

April Ride Update

We would like to announce that Z Tour Tickets will be going live SOON! Every ticket purchase receives a T-shirt. Design to be announced when tickets go live!

Z Tour’s Virtually Anywhere Ride is set to take place between July 1st-July 17th. Unfortunately, due to Illinois Department of Health guidelines, we are unable to offer SAG support, meals, and the End of Ride fun we have in previous years.

However, there are different ways you can help support ZCEC and Z Tour with this year’s ride.

Show and Go: Come to Princeton and ride the routes we will have listed when tickets go live. You will find places along the way to stop to refuel yourself. Bring your crew or go it alone!

Virtually: Get on a route close to you or get on a stationary bike and ride! Get a crew together or go it alone! You can choose to ride, walk, run, kayak, or whatever else you enjoy for exercise to support our program this year. We will feature different routes each weekend, but ride when and where you are able to between July 1st and July 17th!

Sponsorship Tickets: Details on this to come when Eventbrite goes live for ticket sales!

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February 25, 2021

We Are Going Virtual for 2021

We are going virtual for 2021! Details coming soon. Ride with us!

May 22, 2020


Riders, supporters, and community members; The Z Tour will be postponed this year. After much deliberation the Z Tour steering committee has determined that postponing this year’s edition of the Z Tour is the safest course of action for all concerned. This was a very difficult decision and we will miss hosting our great rider friends, but health and safety are paramount. The ride will be back on the third weekend of July 2021 to celebrate its 10th anniversary. Plans are already in the works. Again, this year’s Z Tour will be postponed until 2021.

In the meantime, we would like to invite riders to enjoy our wonderful Bureau County on an individual basis as each feels comfortable. Bureau County offers some of the most scenic and finest riding conditions in the midwest for any and all riders who would like to get out there and enjoy our beautiful riding here in the Princeton Illinois area. All riders are welcome to freely enjoy our friendly community as they feel safely able and guidelines allow. Watch our website and Facebook posts for suggested routes!

Here at Z tour, we are committed to two consistent goals: supporting the Zearing Child Enrichment Center and providing a ride of the highest quality and safety to you, our loyal cyclists.

So, as promised to our pre-registered participants, if you wish a full refund, we will send it, no questions asked. These are trying times and no one needs an extra hassle. If you would like to donate some, or all, of your registration fee, just let us know and we will make that happen with great appreciation.  Or, you might want to participate in our Super Early Bird Sign Up and use your entry toward next year’s special edition ride.  Again, just let us know and you’re in for 2021. Your satisfaction with the Z Tour experience is our highest priority. You can contact us with your decision at at your earliest convenience.

In the meantime we want you to stay connected with Z Tour and the greater cycling community. We will be posting information concerning our exciting plans for 2021, our fantastic “cycle supportive” community, and helpful hints and links all for your cycling enjoyment. Follow the developments at our web site and on Facebook. Whether you are a repeat rider or first time guest you are now one of the Z Tour community.

April 17, 2020

What Bike Should I Use For Each Route? (VIDEO)

Bill Schnabel, Director of the 2020 Z Tour, takes a visit to the Bike Place and answers the question, “What bike should I use for each route?”

April 8, 2020

Refund Policy & Dates

Z Tour riders, we understand the uncertainties that we are all feeling at this time, and that pre-registering for an event that might or might not be held will be tough. To do our part to help relieve some small part of the anxiety, we would like to clearly state our new COVID-19 “inspired” refund policy and dates. We hope this will help you feel more confident about committing to the ride and more comfortable registering.

In the event that the Z Tour is postponed or canceled or that any individual cannot attend for any reason, full refunds will be granted to any registered participant if the request is received by midnight on July 1st. Three options will be offered on the registration site for your refund:

A. Full refund to any registered rider (the total of your registration fee is returned, no questions asked)

B. Partial refund with a donation of $10. (the balance of your fee is returned minus a $10 donation to the Zearing Child Enrichment Center)

C. Donation of $10 only. We would gratefully welcome, of course, larger donations and appreciate your support of the children served at the Zearing Child Enrichment Center. Please see our website to make a donation.

D. If you have placed an order for merchandise, and you would like a refund, please email us at in order to begin this process.

Simply click your choice and follow any prompts and the money will move. Thank you.

We hope this solution will help alleviate some of the uncertainty concerning your participation in the event. Set yourself a goal, and register now, without the monetary risk! We want this ride to be one of your best biking experiences, before, during, and after! See you the third weekend in July in beautiful, historic, friendly Princeton, Illinois. Stay safe, stay positive, and stay healthy!

Very sincerely,

Bill Schnabel, Z Tour Director 2020

April 6, 2020

COVID-19 Statement

The Z Tour team wants to address your concerns and questions directly about our plans as they pertain to the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Your health and safety are our greatest concern.

We’ve had an initial conversation with the Illinois Department of Public Health and at this time, we are proceeding with plans to host our 10th annual Z Tour Ride on July 18, 2020. That said, we will continue to work closely with the IDPH, local government bodies, and community health officials to ensure we are taking the proper precautions and making decisions that are in the best interest of our riders, communities, and volunteers.

We have extended our pre-registration deadline and refund deadline to midnight July 01, 2020. 

We will continue to keep a close eye on the developments as they pertain to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation and will communicate with all impacted parties should any of our plans or timeline change. Again, the wellbeing of all parties involved with this event is our utmost concern.

Please direct any questions to Lauren W, ZCEC Director at

On behalf of the Z Tour committee, thank you;

Bill Schnabel, Z Tour director 2020

March 25, 2020

End of March Tune-Up Time

It may not seem like it but the riding season is just around the corner. Late March will offer some early riding opportunities and you will want your bike to be ready! While it might not be possible to get your bike to a shop just now, here are some key points to consider for getting your riding season off to a great start:

Is the drive train in good order? Is the chain clean and well lubed and are the gears and sprockets in good working order?

Are the tires useable and safe: Check the tread for worn and thin spots.  Look at the sidewalls for cracks, sun damage, or dry rot. If any problems are seen, replace the tires and tubes.

Check the brakes. Do both front and back brakes work? Do both pads on the front and back grab the rim of the tire? Do they squeak when stopping?

And finally, inspect the cables for shifting and braking. Are there any frayed ends on any cables? This might require a shop visit or a shout out to a biking buddy. But do check them… brakes are a good thing to have, at times.

With a few simple tools and access to YouTube, you can order the parts online and do much of the routine maintenance at home yourself.

Don’t miss these first opportunities to get out and get rolling! It’ll be great for your psyche and your immune system! Get rolling and get registered for the Z Tour!

We are hoping to see you in Princeton on the third weekend in July for the annual Z Tour weekend! I’m Bill Schnabel, director of this year’s Z Tour, and I approve this message.

March 21, 2020

Social Distancing With Your Bike

When so much of the news is negative or about gearing down and closing, now is actually a good time to gear up–and open up–to getting outside and social distancing.

March 20, 2020

Announcing this year’s Adventure Route!

Not for the faint of heart, for the daredevil set, when a plain old metric just isn’t enough… Any of these would describe the Z-tour’s newest adventure route. This challenging 66-mile route features a variety of surfaces and tests of a rider’s skill set. From a gnarly gravel climb, to twists and course changes, to muddy canal path sections, this route has what normal metric centuries do not. Be advised, the route offers a premium of challenges but a minimum of support and “easy out” options. Have your bike set up, your bike handling skills tuned up, and your body geared up for this change of pace route!

Check it out at this link:

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