Tour d’Utica “Green Ride” draws 50 riders
June 22nd 2012 · 0 Comments
On Saturday, June 16th, Central New York Bicylcists and Pedestrians (CNY-BAP) and Utica Velo hosted the “Green Ride,” the second in this season’s Tour d’Utica event. The ride started from Café Domenico at 11 a.m., heading toward Proctor Park, Johnson Park Center, and finally ending at Zeina’s Café on Varick Street, where all participants got a coupon for a $5 gyro.
The “Green Ride” was the follow up to April’s “Coffee Tour” of Utica, which brought twenty or so bicyclists to tour Utica Coffee Roasters, Jeannette’s Luncheonette, the Tramontane Café, and Café Domenico. The event was organized by CNY-BAP, with help from the Mohwak Valley Bicycling Club.
The “Green Ride” was a joint effort by CNY-BAP and Utica Velo. Utica Velo, who operates a bicycle garage on Columbia Street, as well as hold “Monday Nite Rides” to encourage bicycling in the City of Utica. However, both CNY-BAP and Utica Velo could not have anticipated the high attendance rate at the “Green Ride,” which brought more than 50 participants who met for the ride at Café Domenico. Participants came from all levels, including several riders from the Mohawk Valley Bicylcing Club, Jim Zecca, Councilman-at-Large for the City of Utica, Harmony Speciale, Oneida County Legislator, and a representative for the Department of Transportation.
A group bicycle ride, riders stayed together, touring the different parks and initiatives that the City has to offers. Upon reaching Johnson Park Center, the riders were given a tour of the facilities, as well as information about the “Green” initiatives, and others, that the Center uses to help rebuild life in Utica.
The “Green Ride” also got a boost from local sponsors who provided food, artwork, and more for riders who embarked upon the Tour. Café Domenico provided the starting venue, as well as a space to set up registration, MindFunk Studios prepared posters, brochures, and graphic design for the event, the Mohawk Valley Bicycling Club provided insurance for the event, and Zeina’s Café offered a $5 gyro, down from a higher price, to participatnts. The event was also sponsored by Rotary International.
Going forward, CNY-BAP and Utica Velo are hoping to stage more rides, and garner more participation. The “Green Ride” showed a definite interest in cultivating a bicycle culture in the City of Utica, and an interest that hopefully continue. Future plans include producing the “Tour d’Utica” as an ongoing series of events – including bicycle participation in local parades (such as the upcoming parade on September 15th to celebrate Utica’s saint, Mother Maryanne Cope).
By Mark Ziobro