On a beautiful, albeit cloudy, Monday morning, people began to gather at LAPD headquarters in front of the Ronald F. Deaton Civic Auditorium. From 7 AM on, more and more bicycles began to appear while tables, tents, and video cameras were set up. It was the long heralded kick-off for Bike Week LA, and LADOT Bike Blog was there to document it.
LADOT Bikeways, along with Metro, were there to hand out lots of free stuff. Maps, bike lights, patch kits, brochures, buttons, pins, Cliff bars and pencils were all there for the taking. We’re pretty sure the Cliff bars were the most popular item, but the new Metro bike maps were a close second.
The LAPD Bike Patrol was out in force, and the backdrop was a Metro Bus with its bike rack fully utilized(don’t forget, all bike riders with a helmet get free rides on Metro and LADOT buses for Bike to Work Day on Thursday!).
Once things got started, there were speeches made by LAPD Chief Charlie Beck, LA City Council Member Tom LaBonge, Glendale Mayor (and MTA Chair) Ara Najarian, LADOT General Manager (and MTA board member) Rita Robinson – who also happens to be on Twitter, Metro CEO Art Leahy, and LACBC Executive Director Jennifer Klausner. Each speaker praised the benefits of bicycling, for commuting or otherwise, and expressed hope for the future of bicycling in Los Angeles.
Next up for Bike Week LA is the Blessing of the Bicycles at Good Samaritan Hospital. LADOT Bike Blog will be there at 8 AM to get his bicycle blessed. On the mean streets of LA, we can use all the help we can get.
We here at LADOT Bike Blog hope to see you there!