By: Duane Blankenship | Category: Other | Issue: September 2011
Riders preparing to take off at last year’s Dickens of a Ride.
Fall in Oklahoma brings about the opportunity for some great bicycling. One of the most highly-organized and scenic rides in northeastern Oklahoma is the annual Dickens of a Ride in Claremore, celebrating its 5th anniversary this year. Sponsored by Claremore Main Street, Dickens of a Ride attracts riders from Oklahoma and surrounding states. Cyclists have the opportunity to select from rides of 30, 50, 65 or 100 miles, plus a Lazy Lake Loop under 10 miles for beginners and kids. Dickens of a Ride will be held Saturday, October 1, with registration beginning at 6 a.m. and the ride starting at 8.
All ride routes begin at Gazebo Park, located at the intersection of Muskogee Avenue and Will Rogers Boulevard. These ride routes head through the scenic countryside of Claremore and Oologah, back to the Claremore Lake area. The routes also cover the countryside east of Claremore through scenic rolling hills and then loop around to head back west to Claremore and the start/finish area at the Gazebo, where riders can enjoy a scrumptious lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. A lunch ticket is $5, and riders are encouraged to purchase their ticket at time of registration.
Other 2011 Dickens of a Ride sponsors include RCB Bank, QuikTrip, Walmart, 1st Bank of Oklahoma, CPCO Company, Inc., Boom-A-Rang Diner, Amazing Melton Sales, Bike-About Bicycles, Walke Brothers Meat and City of Claremore.
A hearty Boom-A-Rang breakfast special will be available at the diner beginning at 6 a.m. for only $2.99. This new day-of-the-ride special consists of one egg, two pieces of bacon or sausage, toast or biscuit and gravy, and hash brown potatoes.
Visit www.downtownclaremore.org to register online with your credit card, or print a registration form, fill it out, and mail it in with your check. You may also wait until the morning of the ride to register.
Several well-stocked rest stops will be available along each of the routes. In addition, mechanical and SAG support will be provided until 5 p.m., just in case any rider encounters a problem. Riders are required to wear ANSI, CPSC or Snell approved helmets and must obey all traffic laws.
Registrants may pick up registration packets at Bike-About Bicycles, 300 W. Will Rogers Blvd. in Claremore, on Thursday, September 29 until 8 p.m. or on the day of the ride starting at 6 a.m.
Please note that riders under 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult who is also on a bicycle and riding with them. Riders under 18 years of age must have a parent or guardian sign a release form. Dickens of a Ride will go on rain or shine, and there will be no refunds. For more information, call or go online.
When you participate in Dickens of a Ride, you are supporting the programs and projects of Claremore Main Street, Inc. You’re helping fund preservation efforts, economic development and special projects including planters, trees, benches and public art. This really is one Dickens of a Ride. Hope to see you there with your bike.
Blankenship graduated from the University of Oklahoma and has enjoyed a lifetime career in advertising. He started his own advertising business in 1993 and enjoys creating graphic art and writing. Hobbies include hunting, fishing and pencil drawings. Duane and his wife, Janice, have been married over 50 years and are active in their church and community. He has been a contributing writer for Value News/Values Magazine since 2005.