By John P. Anderson
Today, Friday May 17, is Bike to Work Day and there are pit stops all over the county for cyclists to stop, enjoy a bite to eat, meet some fellow riders, and generally start the day on a good foot. I enjoyed the morning at the 30th Street & Upas Street corner with fresh coffee and pastries and some conversation with neighbors.
If you weren’t able to join the festivities today (or did but want to keep the party going) there are a number of great cycling activities going on this weekend.
Sunday, May 19
Bike Local Sundays – South Park – All Day
The second edition of this program from the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition rolls into action on Sunday in South Park. The Bike Local Sundays program is held in a different neighborhood every third Sunday of the month and South Park follows the Hillcrest debut in April. Per the SDCBC:
“Bike Local Sundays started with a goal to get more people riding bikes to support business in San Diego. Trends show that more people riding bikes versus driving improves community health, air quality and traffic congestion, as well as boosts business by relieving residents of the costs of owning and operating a vehicle, transferring those savings to the local economy.”
There will be a bike valet for attendees at Alchemy restaurant (1503 30th Street, 92102). Several South Park businesses will offer discounts to cyclists shopping in their stores on Sunday including: Alchemy, Progress Boutique, Thomas Bike Shop, Eclipse Chocolates, Mythology Eco-Boutique, Diego Tattoo Gallery.
[In addition to discounts in South Park for the day the San Diego Bike Commuter discount program is in effect everyday, offering cyclists a discount – typically around 10%. For a list of participating businesses check out the official website.]
CicloSDias Mini #1 – Marston Loop in Balboa Park – 10 AM – 4 PM
A ciclovia is an event that closes down streets in a city or neighborhood to vehicles for a few hours or days and encourages residents to bicycle, walk, and enjoy the streetscape. San Diego’s first, coined CicloSDias, will take place August 11th primarily along 30th Street, but preceding the main event there will be a series of CicloSDias Minis. The first of the ‘Minis’ will be this Sunday in the Marston Loop area of Balboa Park.
Los Angeles’ ciclovia events are dubbed CicLAvia and the most recent was held on April 21st with a route from downtown Los Angeles to Venice Beach, about 15 miles total. The event attracted an estimated 150,000 including a man on a 14.5 foot tall bicycle featured in this crazy vertigo-inducing video.
Urban Bike and Social Club – Summer Kick-Off Ride and Grill in Presidio Park – 11 AM
The Urban Bike and Social Club regularly hosts social rides in San Diego to gather friends and strangers together for camaraderie, bicycle cruising, and enjoying San Diego. Some of their events feature a ride to a restaurant, others celebrate our craft beer culture with a keg haul and drinks after riding. This Sunday is the summer kick-off event for the group, riding from North Park to Presidio Park for grilling out, enjoying local craft beer, and soaking up the sun.
The ride will start at North Park Bikes (3022 North Park Way, 92104) at 11 AM and head out for a moderate paced 45 minute or hour ride as a group before ending in Presidio Park. You should expect good tunes throughout the ride, a friendly crowd, and an enjoyable Sunday afternoon to follow. There are currently 61 people RSVPed for the event and likely to be a fair amount more before the ride starts on Sunday.
Mayor Bob Filner had the following to say about Friday’s Bike to Work Day event:
“I love the concept of ‘Bike to Work Day’. Imagine what it will do for our air, our bodies, our physical and mental well-being if ‘Bike to Work Day’ eventually becomes ‘Bike to Work Lifestyle’. This is the first of many steps to making San Diego a bikeable city.”
Cheers to that and viva la bici!