Bike 31…One and Done was held on Saturday, June 14 along the new U.S. Highway 31, before it will be open to the vehicular traffic. This non-competitive bike ride was truly a one and done experience for nearly 1500 riders of all types who cycled along a newly paved road with no motor vehicles, roughly a 24 mile loop.The event started at 8:00 and ended at noon.
Riders could do any distance they chose from 2 miles to the entire 24 miles and had the option to continue and do the loop again. Those who wanted a shorter ride could turn around at the interspersed highway constructed crossovers which were about 2-3 miles apart.
All cyclists were required to wear helmets and sign a waiver.
Bike Michiana Coalition requested a $10 donation the day of the ride. All donations are going toward purchasing helmets for Bike safety classes for elementary students in the area schools. The number of classes that can be taught and helmets earned are dependent on funds available for helmets. This school year loyal skilled volunteers taught the classes in 14 schools, fitting over 1150 students who each promise to wear their helmet every time they get on their bike. Our goal is to instill lifelong safe habits of safe cycling. They are 1 hour classes demonstrating rules of the road for bicycles, being visible and predictable, the ABC’s of checking bike before riding, and reasons why we wear a helmet.
Weather on Saturday was a perfect 65-75 degrees.
We have so many to thank who got so involved in the event. The south Bend Convention and Visitors Bureau with Meghan Huff and Rob DeCleene who provided assistance with marketing and administrative assistance and helped with registration, and the fantastic parking procedure, and became a working partner. Matt Deitchley of The Indiana Department of Transportation, took care of all permits and offered support and encouragement to use the new portion of US before the official opening.
Lakeville became an active supporter and the Business Owners Association offered water and Water Stop support and provided volunteers as well. The outstanding presence of Lakeville Fire and Police emergency services under the leadership of Chief George Schaefer was so appreciated. They were very professional and welcoming and several times could be seen helping a cyclist fix some bike issue, transported a disabled bike and rider back to start and interacted with any riders in their view.
The County police under the command of Major Chandler handled the flow of traffic from Old U.S. 31 to parking areas and kept all safe.
We appreciate all the work that contributed through time and effort that assured the success of this unique experience for participants from several states as far away asWyomingandWashingtonDC.
A final congratulations and thanks to Karen Haun who chaired an active Bike to Work Week.
Bike Michiana Coalition
Bike Michiana Coalition