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Sunday, August 09, 2009

Upcoming St. Louis-area rides a diverse lot

If you live in the St. Louis area and can't find a bicycle ride the next few weekends, you're not looking hard enough.

The most provocative of the rides will be Saturday, Aug. 15 -- St. Louis's second version of the World Naked Bike Ride. Cyclists will start gathering at Tower Grove Park's Stupp Plaza at 7 p.m. and take off at 9 p.m. for a route that ends at the Atomic Cowboy. Cyclists are encouraged to "bare as your dare," although it should be noted that publicly exposing certain parts of the anatomy is against the law in St. Louis. The goal of the ride is to protest oil dependency, promote a comfortable body image and to raise awareness of cyclists. A slideshow from the 2008 ride is available at the Riverfront Times. (Note: Images on the site may not be appropriate for children or the workplace.)

If you're into scavenger hunts, the Urban Assault Ride on Sunday, Aug. 16, is for you! New Belgium Brewing is behind the ride, which requires teams of cyclists to take on physical and mental obstacles at checkpoints along the route. The ride begins at 9 a.m. in Forest Park, and proceeds will be used to benefit Trailnet and BicycleWORKS.

Also, Trailnet is doing its I Scream for Ice Cream Ride on Aug. 16 out of The Cyclery and Fitness Center, 2572 Troy Road in Edwardsville. Registration is from 7:30 to 9 a.m., and the routes of 22, 34 or 43 miles include a stop at Annie's Frozen Custard in Edwardsville. And as we all know, ice cream is the rocket fuel of cycling!

The following weekend is a big one for charity rides. On Saturday, Aug. 22, the 15th Operational Weather Squadron at Scott Air Force Base is putting on Miles for Marty, a benefit in honor of Master Sgt. Edward Martin, who suffered a massive stroke while on duty in 2006. Money from the ride will go to the Disabled Amercan Veterans. Routes of 6.5 miles on the base that can be repeated and a 30-mile route from the base to Freeburg and back are available.

Also on Aug 22, the Missouri Chapter of the Lupus Foundation of America will hold the WolfRide 2009 at Bolm-Schuhcraft Park in Columbia, Ill. Routes of 50 and 100 miles are available, and the $45 registration includes food, entertainment and free massages after the ride.

For those of you who want to start riding at the crack of dawn, the Illinois Center for Autism in Fairview Heights is planning the Bike at Dawn ride on Sunday, Aug. 23. Cyclists will start registering at 5 a.m. at the Illinois Center for Autism, near Longacre Park in Fairview Heights, and take off at 6 a.m. on routes of 8 and 15 miles.

Summer festivals are a big part of the lifeblood of Southwestern Illinois Catholics, and one of the region's biggest church festivals is the Kirchenfest, the annual celebration at St. Paul Catholic Church in Highland. This year's Kirchenfest will include the first-ever KirchenRide, which will include routes of 17 and 40 miles in the rural countryside around Highland. Registration begins at 7 a.m. Aug. 23 with an 8 a.m. shotgun start.

The climax -- at least in terms of numbers -- of the St. Louis cycling calendar is the 45th annual Moonlight Ramble on Aug. 28-29 in downtown St. Louis. The ride routinely draws more than 10,000 riders, who take off on the streets of St. Louis shortly after midnight Sunday. Proceeds from the ride benefit the Gateway Council of Hostelling International.

No excuses! Get out and ride!

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Roger 1 comments links to this post 11:21 PM

thanks roger, another good article!
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