With its newly incorporated route on 12th Avenue, Cyclovia made itself known in the City of South Tucson this homecoming weekend. Residents and local businesses embraced the event with warmth and great optimism.
“This is my second time coming to Cyclovia, it is a fantastic family event,” said Krissy Coller, a rider in the event. “I don’t own a bike so I am using a borrowed bike from a friend to be here, I am a casual cyclist; my family and I just wanted to be a part of this again.”
Even though the event is bike-centric, Cyclovia doesn't require a bike, and anyone is welcome to participate. “I love, it I think it’s fantastic; it is nice to get this kind of exposure to the businesses down here, and it brings all the neighborhoods together,” Coller said.
Restaurants also participated during the event, handing out fresh beverages like horchata, lemonade and agua de jamaica for people biking in the afternoon heat.
One resturaunt, El Gorrion, has been present on 12th Avenue for more than 30 years and been actively involved with South Tucson’s community, according to the owner, Jorge Teran.
“Even 30 years ago I heard about the enthusiasm [around] bikes here in Tucson when I was in high school,” said Teran. “I hope more events like this invite people from all over the community in South Tucson since it helps promote our businesses here.”
Mexican-American culture was present on the streets of South Tucson, from the smell of cooking Sonoran hot dogs to the sounds of string and horn instruments from the local Mariachi bands.
“I like it a lot. It is funny because being in Tucson, the culture is very different from Chicago, which is where I am from," said Sabrina Aubriof, a Cyclovia volunteer. "But it is just cool getting to listen to the mariachi bands come up — it’s very fun,”
Aubriof believes Cyclovia has a community-wide impact. “This is one of those events that really makes a difference, although some things are far, biking could be better than a car.”
Cyclovia hosts its open-road event to cyclists twice every year. Tucson’s cycling community will be able to enjoy the next Cyclovia in April next year.
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