Toronto Bike Rodeo upcoming

TORONTO – Bicyclists of all ages will have the opportunity to learn about sharing the roads safely with others during the first Bike Rodeo set for 10 a.m. May18 at the corner of Henry and North Fourth streets.

The rodeo, sponsored in part by the Toronto Coalition for Revitalization’s Friendly Streets of Toronto walking and biking program and the city safety director’s office, will include information on bike safety, prizes and give-aways, as well as group rides, according to George Komar, president of the Toronto Coalition for Revitalization.

“Eric Wilson, a deputy sheriff, is leading this,” said Komar. “Part of the activities will be to check the bicycles for safety and to teach bicyclists how to ride safely.” All ages are welcome to attend, with an emphasis on children and parents, Komar added.

“We’ll also be educating the public on our (Toronto biking and walking pathway) sharrows,” said Bob Merideth, member of the coalition’s bicycle committee.

“We’re just promoting safe and healthy recreation activities,” said city Safety Director John Parker.

“We want to educate the public about our riding program,” said Komar, adding the program, Peddal Toronto and More, meets at 6 p.m every Tuesday at Sloane Station Square at the corner of North Fourth and Market streets.

The city’s bike and walking pathway now extends onto county Road 7F, and now Empire and Stratton are going to become part of a 16-mile loop, according to Komar.

“Empire and Stratton will be marking their streets (with biking and walking markings) as well,” said Komar, adding the pathway eventually will extend into the two villages at some point.

Meredith said the Tuesday biking runs began last year, and the event has attracted more riders since. “Our first ride last Tuesday we had 17 riders,” said Merideth, adding it was a diverse group from serious bikers to casual riders of all ages.

“We’ve attracted riders outside Toronto as well.”

Parker said the idea is to teach bicyclists how to share the road with motorists in a safe manner.

“This route also will include strict control of littering and speeding by our patrols,” he added.

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