“Ride America for Safe Routes”

Four ambitious women are undertaking a cross-country endurance ride that will kick off from Key West, Fl. today, Sunday, February 5th and culminate in San Francisco in late April.  Two sisters, Jeanie and Chelsea Ward-Waller, their mother, Jane, and close friend Stephanie Palmer are riding across America to benefit the bicycle safety advocacy efforts of the League of American Bicyclists and the Safe Routes to School National Partnership.  Dubbed “Ride America for Safe Routes” (RASR), their ride follows a route traversing 13 southern states and 20 major cities, logging over 5,000 miles between Florida and California.  The mission of RASR is to raise $50,000 for the League’s Bike Friendly America program and for Safe Routes to School (SRTS) programs in local communities.  In addition, the RASR Team will advocate the critical need for bike safety and promote the public health benefits of bicycling through events with local bicycle groups and SRTS programs in communities along their route.  See the RASR website at http://rideforsaferoutes.blogspot.com/ or contact rideforsaferoutes@gmail.com for more information on the Ride and to support a future of bike-friendly communities.

The kickoff party, at Salsa Loca, last night was a great success.  Many members of Team Mile Zero Heroes came out to show their support.  This morning the Mile Zero Heroes will join the ladies for the ride out planned to depart the US Post Office on Whitehead Street at 10am.  Thank you to Salsa Loca for catering the event, JT for the One Human Family handouts and Eaton Bikes for the gift bags.

Good luck!

First Annual Over-Sea Cycle 100

This Saturday, January 21, 2012 is the First Annual Over-Sea Cycle 100.  This ride, from Mile Marker 100 in Key Largo to Mile Marker Zero in Key West, will commemorate the 100 year anniversary of the first arrival of Flagler’s Over-Sea Railroad.  The entire Florida Keys is celebrating this weekend, what was once considered the “Eighth Wonder of the World”.  We will stop by many of the roadside attractions for plenty of photo ops and the occasional historic presentation.

Wounded Warrior Project – Red, White and Blue Ride

For information and advance registration for the Wounded Warrior Project Ride in Key West, Fl on Saturday, January 14, 2011 visit www.soldierride.org.  Be sure to click on the ride links.  The ride in Key West is titled – Red, White & Blue and will depart the Truman Waterfront in Key West, Fl at 1:00pm.  To view the route click on this link.  Please come out in support of our Wounded Warriors.

Third Annual Key West Holiday Lighted Bike Parade ~ Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Click to view the route for the Third Annual Key West Holiday Lighted Bike Parade. Thank you to our sponsors; Strunk Ace Hardware, Island 107.1, The Key West Shipwreck Treasures Museum, The Bike Shop and Mattheessen’s for helping to cover the costs associated with this event and to the Key West Police Department for their support.

Thanks to Johnny White and his crew from Mile Zero Mag for covering the event.  Check out this link to view pictures.

See you on Wednesday!

SMART Ride 8

Completed my fourth SMART Ride last weekend, SMART Ride 8.  What a great event, benefiting AIDS agencies throughout the State of Florida.  Year to date, SMART Ride 8 has raised over $675,000 and a little under $3 million in 8 years.  All of which has been donated to the participating agencies.

I was proud to ride with and be a member of Team Mile Zero Hereos.  Our recently formed team raised over $30,000 alone through car washes, raffles, 50/50’s, silent auctions and social cocktail hours.  A huge THANK YOU to Nancy from Salsa Loca in Key West for sponsoring our team jerseys and supporting us during the event.  For more information, make sure to check out the SMART Ride.  I can’t wait for next year’s ride!  Until then check back to see what other great rides myself and the Mile Zero Hereos  (website coming) will be participating in.  Next up…Kids In Distress Inlet Challenge.

Sharing the experience…

Below is a brief overview provided to me by Sylvain Hout, about a trip down the Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail and US 1, that he and his companions completed in April 2011.  I met them in Key West at Mallory Square on April 19th and am proud to share their experience with you.  Enjoy, I know I did.
 
We (Danielle & Sylvain and Lucie & Pierre) flew from Montreal to Miami on April 15, 2011 with our pulled apart tandems.  The next day, we put them back together and as a warm up, rode for about 30 miles to downtown Miami.
 
We left the Holiday Inn in Coral Gables the morning of April 17.  Followed Old Cutler Rd, S Dixie Hwy, Old Card Sound and arrived at Alabama Jack’s at 3:30pm.  We took a little water break before continuing on the 905 thru the Crocodile Lake National Wildlife Refuge (sorry, no gators).  We hit a bit of light rain that day, just enough to cool us down.  By the time we arrived at the Holiday Inn in Key Largo, we had completed a 64 mile ride. 
 
April 18, we headed down to Marathon (46 miles).  Crossed a few bridges.  One of them, the Dande B. Fascell bridge, was 2.5 miles. Stopped at the Wahoos Bar and Grill for lunch (you’ve got to try the tuna) and paid a little visit to the monument dedicated to the 1935 hurricane.  Roads were very good.  Lots of bike paths, some newer than other.  Stayed at another Holiday Inn and went to the Island Fish Co. for dinner.
 
Final destination, Marathon – Key West, April 19.  Had an excellent breakfast and by 8:45 am were out riding.  We carried lots of water and what should have happened, happened.  Our (Danielle & Sylvain) rear rack broke.  Ended going to the Aargh Maintenance and Service Golf Cart in Marathon.  The employee (a man in his 50s) kindly helped us fix the bracket.  Crossed more bridges; the 7-mile bridge being by far the longest one.  Interesting point is to find yourself riding with the Atlantic Ocean on one side and the Gulf of Mexico on the other. We rode 57 miles that day.
 
We booked our last stay at the Grand Guest House for two nights where we were greeted by Derek, the Property Manager, who described us with fervour his town, what to do and where to go.  We had dinners at Nine One Five (watch out for James Matthew Chapman and his amazing musical bike) and at the Flaming Buoy Filet Co.  Got our pictures taken at the Southernmost Point and at Mile Marker Zero.  Rode by the Harry S. Truman Little White House, Art Museum and the Shipwreck Treasures Museum as well as enjoying the Sunset Celebration.
 
 
We had a wonderful time.  The weather was just super. Hotels were accommodating and met wonderful people.  We were also lucky to meet Clinton Curry, an avid cyclist, promoting his favorite sport (cycling) with passion in the Keys.  We were looking for Key West cycling jerseys.  Clinton being Clinton, contacted his friend Patrick at “Fixed Gears” and first thing you knew, got jerseys for us. That was cool.
 
We would not hesitate to do this trip again and we encouraged anyone interested in doing the Keys to do it.  Especially if you do not like hilly roads.  There are none in the Keys. 
 
Sylvain Huot
Ottawa, Canada
 
Thank you for sharing the experience of cycling in the Florida Keys.  I hope that future cyclists here will be compelled to do the same.
 
Clinton Curry