By: Carol Beck-Round | Category: In Our Communities | Issue: September 2015
Riders of all ages will enjoy the scenic routes selected for this year’s Dickens of a Ride, set for Saturday, October 3 beginning at 8 a.m. in downtown Claremore. Five routes of varying distances are planned to challenge even the most dedicated cyclist.
Over 300 cyclists are expected to converge on downtown Claremore Main Street on October 3 for the 8th annual Dickens of a Ride. With cooler weather and fall officially beginning, riders who participate will enjoy the scenic countryside of west Claremore, through Oologah and around Claremore Lake.
The ride begins at 8 a.m. and includes mechanical and SAG support as well as supplied rest stops throughout the ride, which begins and ends at Gazebo Park on the corner of Muskogee Avenue and Will Rogers Boulevard. Volunteers in cars will be driving the routes to assist any riders who need support. “We’re blessed to have these people who volunteer their time,” says Janice Whittaker, owner of Bike About Bicycles.
Whittaker has helped to organize and promote the event since its beginning in 2007. “It’s like a big party in a way,” says Whittaker. “It’s not a competitive event but a fun relaxing ride with many unique sights along the routes, as well as plenty of refreshments for the cyclists at the various rest stops.”
The family-friendly event features five available routes, depending on the distance chosen by the bike rider. Routes include a Lazy Lake Loop of roughly seven miles; a 30-mile course; a 50-miler; a 62-mile route; and for the more competitive riders, there is a 100-mile route that winds through the rolling hillsides east of Claremore. “The route is designed to keep riders off of the major highways and ensure the safety of the participants,” she adds. “An added benefit of staying off the main roads is that riders experience some historical places including a WPA built stone schoolhouse, as well as passing by one of the first oil wells in Oklahoma.”
Before riders hit the road, downtown’s Boom-a-Rang Diner is offering a rider breakfast special beginning at 6 a.m. Additionally, many of the downtown businesses will open early for the ride and offer discounts for participants as well as for friends of those riding.
Registration is $30 per rider for the four longer routes or $30 per family for the Lazy Lake Loop. Tandem rides are also available for $45. Registration packets can be picked up at Bike About Bicycles (300 W. Will Rogers Blvd.) on Thursday, October 1 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. or on the day of the ride beginning at 6 a.m. Maps of the routes will be provided, and riders should be prepared for some hills.
Participants and friends of the ride can order a Dickens of a Ride long-sleeved T-shirt for $20. T-shirt orders must be in by September 7 to ensure they are completed before the ride.
All riders are required to wear an ANSI, CPSC or Snell approved helmet and must obey all traffic laws. Riders under 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult who is also on a bicycle and riding with them.
The event supports the programs and projects of Claremore Main Street, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing Claremore’s downtown area. Proceeds from the event will help fund preservation efforts, economic development and special projects, including planters, trees, benches and public art.
To register, view a map or get more details about the ride, visit http://bit.ly/BikeRide2015.
After 30 years in public school education, Carol Round retired and moved from Grand Lake to Claremore, Oklahoma in 2005, where she writes a weekly faith-based column which runs in 14 Oklahoma newspapers as well as several national and international publications. Three volumes of her columns have been compiled into collections: A Matter of Faith, Faith Matters and by FAITH alone. She has also written Journaling with Jesus: How to Draw Closer to God and a companion workbook, The 40-Day Challenge. This past year she has written three children’s books, a series called Nana’s 3 Jars, to teach children about the value of giving, saving and spending money. All of Carol’s books are available through Amazon. In addition to writing her weekly column, authoring books and speaking to women’s groups, she writes for Value News. She also blogs regularly at www.carolaround.com. When she is not writing or speaking, she loves spending time with her three grandchildren, working in her flowerbeds, shooting photos, volunteering at her church or going on mission trips overseas, and hiking. She is also an avid reader and loves working crosswords and trying to solve Sudoku puzzles.
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