Simple changes can improve bike race
I hope the Columbus Day bike race was a success for the Rotary Club, and it was able to raise significant money for its worthwhile causes.
I would like to offer some suggestions to make the event more “local” friendly, and possibly eliminate some of the inconveniences for the townspeople.
There should be a designated parking area for the bikers: the school parking lot or Fort Getty would probably be better and safer than having the bikers take up all of the downtown parking.
The racers are in the street as they get the bikes off the racks, which can be dangerous to passing cars and bikers. It also prevents others from doing business and shopping in the downtown area. Having a designated parking area would also prevent the bikers from changing their clothes on the street in front of families and children. Adequate portable toilets could be in place so the racers didn’t have to use the street as a bathroom.
Publishing the racecourse in the Press might also help locals use alternate roads instead of getting caught in the midst of the race.
Sharing the road is a two-way proposition. I saw many bikers in the middle of the road after the race, causing traffic to line up behind them. I was behind a biker on Howland Avenue at 1:10 p.m. who made no effort to move to the side so cars could pass.
The police also need to make sure all participants obey our town laws, as we do. I don’t think parking on Veterans Memorial Square for out-of-town car advertising purposes is permissible.
This race helps our local economy and is a good fundraiser for the Rotary Club. It is a good event for participants of all ages. Since it seems to grow every year, I feel some organizational changes should be made so it is enjoyable for everyone.