Bike you may
Previewing Sacramento’s May Is Bike Month
Bicycling doesn’t always have to be about healthy lifestyles or even the environment.
Sometimes, it’s just a party.
Bikers riding custom cruisers and Schwinn Sting-rays, who meet on Second Saturdays at Suzie Burger on 29th and P streets, have a different motive to bike around town.
“It’s more about the social side than the health and fitness side,” said Matt Cleary, general manager at Suzie Burger. “They down plenty of [Pabst Blue Ribbon]. We put it on special for them here.”
The social aspects of bicycling in the Sacramento area will be exhibited throughout the annual May Is Bike Month campaign. The monthlong event, coordinated by the Sacramento Area Council of Governments and local transportation organizations, advocates bicycling in the region.
“Sacramento is a good place to bike,” said Erik Johnson, government and media affairs coordinator for SACOG. “The community has embraced bicycling.”
Besides the social affairs, the campaign also challenges Sacramentans to log miles ridden on a bike for commutes, errands, recreation and work trips. Individuals, employers, bike clubs and teams all will compete this year to ride a total of more than 2 million miles.
In 2010, participants logged more than 1.3 million miles, shattering the goal of 1 million. With participation climbing, the campaign doubled the mileage goal for this year.
Those interested in logging miles can register at www.mayisbikemonth.com.
One hundred of those who log miles for all four weeks will be randomly drawn to win one of two $100 gift certificates to local bike shops, and 100 participants will get a pair of May Is Bike Month socks, according to the campaign’s website.
But, as those who meet for PBR will tell you, it’s more than socks and riding.
There are a number of social events throughout the month, including rallies, festivals and a bike film festival.
For Second Saturday on May 14, enthusiasts and showoffs will gather at Cleary’s restaurant to ride together and to compete for awards, including best guys and gals bikes, best cruiser, best paint job and best in show.
If Cleary and his buddies represent the social side, then Hot Italian owner Andrea Lepore portrays the environmentally friendly side. Her restaurant recently was also honored with the first Bicycle Friendly Business award in California from the League of American Bicyclists.
Lepore said her involvement is kindled for a variety of reasons, including health and the environment.
“It’s a little bit of everything,” she explained. “It’s part of the Italian lifestyle and part of the California urban lifestyle.
“Sacramento is a perfect place to bike.”
Some of this year’s Bike Month events include:
The showing of the film Bicycle Dreams at the Crocker Art Museum on Cinco de Mayo, or May 5, at 7 p.m., which includes a question-and-answer session with filmmaker Stephen Auerbach.
On May 7, the second annual Vélo & Vintage fashion show will again bring together local boutiques and bicycling enthusiasts for a night of fashion on two wheels at Hot Italian (1627 16th Street, 8:30 p.m., no cover, www.veloandvintage.com).
Bikes and chicks—or, well, chickens. For the second year in a row, the Tour de Cluck, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on May 14, will allow cyclists an opportunity for a self-guided tour of the Davis chicken coops.
The Amgen Tour of California will ride through the region on May 16 and 17. Stage two of the race will roll through Nevada City, Beale Air Force Base and finish downtown on May 16, and stage three will go from Auburn through Folsom on May 17.
Bike to Work Day will take place on May 20 and includes a Bikefest at the Capitol, featuring booths with cycling information, music and free bicycle safety checks.