50+ Bicyclists Brave Rain for DTLA Ride; Blessing of the Bikes; Bike to Work Day Tomorrow

True to our word, LADOT Bike Blog showed up bright and early this Tuesday morning at Union Station with our rain gear on. Once there, we met up with over 50 other bicyclists who had come out for the Downtown LA Ride. Rain had slowed to just the barest of misting by the time the ride took off, and a great time was had by all.

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Riders alongside City Hall

LAPD graciously provided an escort for the group ride, and members of CICLE and the Metro Bike Program acted as ride leaders and sweepers to keep the group together. Throughout downtown, curious drivers would pull up alongside the group to ask what we were doing or honk their horns in support.

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Riders gathering at Union Station

The ride was an extremely diverse group, reflecting the wide-ranging bicycle community of Los Angeles.  There were people in work clothes on commuter bikes and foldies, working class folks on mountain bikes and hybrids, spandexed cyclists with clip-in pedals, and young people on fixies and custom bikes.  In all, the ride passed by 5 different Metro stations, demonstrating the ease of combining Metro and your bicycle to get to work.  Now that there are no longer any restrictions of when you can bring your bike on Metro, getting to work by bicycle is even easier.

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A great group and a great ride

A special thanks, again, to Metro, LACBC and CICLE for helping pull off this great ride.  A couple great photos from the event are at the LA Now LA Times blog, and (as always) on our flickr page and facebook page.

Blessing of the Bikes

Yesterday saw the Blessing of the Bikes at Good Samaritan Hospital in Pico-Union.  In all, six different faiths were represented in this non-denominational blessing for LA’s bicyclists.  Council Member Tom LaBonge, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, and Shotgun Kelley from K-EARTH were also on hand to celebrate the morning blessings.

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Despite the rain, many bikes received blessings on Tuesday

Excellently covered by Joe Linton at the CicLAvia blog, Mayor Villaraigosa received the Golden Spoke Award for his dedication to making LA a better place for bicyclists.  Good Samaritan and DPW employee Chris Bolivar was also honored for saving someone’s bike from being stolen off of a bus rack, and 3 boys from the neighborhood related a harrowing story of one being  hit by an inattentive driver while crossing the street on his bicycle.  Thankfully, he survived the encounter, and we hope that the blessing of his bicycle on Tuesday (along with greater driver awareness) will help keep him safe throughout the year.  Nearby bike lanes on 7th Street (scheduled for installation this October) will hopefully make this neighborhood safer for bicyclists and drivers alike in years to come.  More photos from the Blessing of the Bikes are on our flickr page and facebook page.

Bike to Work Day (and Bike From Work Day) Tomorrow

Tomorrow marks the peak of Bike Week LA, with Bike to Work Day taking place tomorrow morning and Bike From Work Day tomorrow afternoon.  Metro has put together a fantastic map of the locations of more than 40 pits stops for bicyclists throughout LA County tomorrow morning.

Metro's great pit-stop map

LADOT Bike Blog will be making the rounds amongst the three downtown LA pit-stops tomorrow.  We’ll be pulling the LADOT Bike Program trailer, chock full of free goodies for folks taking part in Bike to Work Day.  The giveaways are on a first come, first served basis, so keep your eyes peeled for a green Raleigh pulling a black trailer with a bright orange “LADOT Bike Program” flag through downtown.  You can also find more information on Bike From Work Day at the LACBC’s blog and at GOOD Magazine.  We’ll have more photos from Bike to Work Day, and a Bike Week LA wrap-up, tomorrow afternoon.

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