The first Dallas Bike Ride, a 20-mile loop through closed city roads, rolls into town Nov. 4. The route will showcase neighborhoods from Bishop Arts District to Uptown, crossing the Trinity River four times.
The ride was organized “to take people to different parts of the city that they’ve never been to before,” says Michelle Cleveland, the marketing director of Capital Sports Ventures, the organization planning the event in conjunction with local Dallas organizations.
Dallas Bike Ride is designed to be taken at a leisurely pace, so “anyone from three to 103” can participate, Cleveland says. Though the full route is 20 miles, there will be a turn-off to shorten the ride to about 10 miles for riders looking for a less lengthy route.
The course was designed with dual goals of creating the best, safest experience for the riders with the most minimal impact to the rest of the city, Cleveland says.
If you don’t have a bike, or if you’re coming from out of town, a not-yet-named local bike shop will offer rentals at the starting line.
Along the way, pit stops will offer water, snacks and live local music to keep energy and spirits high.
After completing the course, participants will be greeted by a Finish Line Festival at City Hall Plaza, which anyone is welcome to attend even if they didn’t bike. Upon arrival, it’s red carpet treatment: Cyclists can use a free bike valet so they don’t have to cart their bikes around.
Expect live entertainment from around 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 4, plus bike shop reps giving complimentary tune-ups for any bikes worse for wear after the ride. Kids will be entertained with carnival games, and the whole family can enjoy photo booths, giveaways and even a wellness zone with yoga.
As an added bonus, Capital Sports Ventures will donate a portion of proceeds to two local non-profits: BikeTexas and Incarnation House. Incarnation House is launching a new after-school program for disadvantaged high schoolers to go on group bike rides and learn to fix bikes. BikeTexas will use the funds to teach 400 Dallas-area youth to ride bikes at an Earth Day event in 2018.
The expected turnout for this first year is about 4,000 people.
“We’re planning to stick around and have Dallas Bike Ride for years to come, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it grew a lot,” Cleveland says.