Cyclists are getting ready for the largest free bicycling event in the state.
The 24th Annual Tour de Bronx cycling event will take place on Sunday, October 28 at Grand Concourse and East 164th Street starting at 8:30 a.m. and finishing with a flourish later on in the afternoon at the New York Botanical Garden.
Cyclists will ride on one of two routes, a 25-mile or a 40-mile course, both of which offer plenty of exercise and a scenic tour of the ever-changing borough, said Olga Luz Tirado, Bronx Tourism Council executive director
Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and the tourism council host the event every year.
The Tour de Bronx 2018 is sponsored by Montefiore Medical Center, BronxCare Health System, Mercy College, Con Edison, St. Barnabas Hospital, Liberty Coca Cola, The Nature’s Bounty Company, Unlimited Biking!, Zip Car and Dominos.
Diaz said the event is one of his favorites because it attracts people not just from the city and state, but also well beyond, including from different parts of the world.
“For many, this is a yearly pilgrimage to the Bronx, where they get to enjoy our historical sites, our beautiful waterfronts and vibrant neighborhoods, showcasing the best that we have to offer,” said Diaz.
The borough president said that the effort also emphasizes the importance of a healthy life-style, complementing his #Not62 initiative to improve the overall health of the borough.
“The ride supports an active lifestyle which is so important to good health,” said Dr. Peter Selwyn of Montefiore, a participant.
Up to 10,000 cyclists can be expected to cover the two courses, said Luz Tirado.
The courses traverse locations as varied as City Island and Orchard Beach, Grand Concourse and Mott Haven, and Clason Point and the borough’s shoreline, according to event coordinators.
When riders reach the NYBG, they will be treated to music, pizza and a chance to do some yoga stretching sponsored by Montefiore (weather permitting), said Luz Tirado.
For the first time, participants can rent bicycles, along with helmets that are required of all riders, from Unlimited Biking!
Diaz held an event announcing the start of the festivities of the Tour de Bronx at Mercy College on Monday, October 22, where he urged cyclists from all over the world to participate.
Should inclement weather necessitate the canceling of the Tour de Bronx, which would only be the second time since 1994, there will not be a rain date, said Luz Tirado.
More information about Tour de Bronx 2018 is found at www.tourd