No one puts as much charm and creativity into a group bike ride as BicycleSpace, the little bike shop by the convention center on 7th St. Last year they started a series of full-moon bike rides, encouraging folks to dress in white, and treating everyone to a warm summer ride through the city. July’s full moon ride was given a theme of fireflies; everyone was given a yellow glow stick at the starting point in Mount Vernon Square. Around 800 cyclists participated, making quite the sight. Midway through the ride, it started to rain, but not heavily enough to discourage the hardy cyclists. We were treated to a few beautiful bolts of lightning. Arriving at Lincoln Park in Capitol Hill, volunteers laid out a wonderful picnic, with the rain soon coming to an end. Here are a few photos from the ride.

The group was too big for bike lanes, and luckily the route we took was quiet, without too much traffic. But it does illustrate how infrastructure and design can facilitate and encourage safe riding. Bikes rarely get their own spaces, so we are always navigating among cars and trucks, or pedestrians. Fun rides like this are good both for cyclists to become comfortable riding city streets, and for drivers to become accustomed to sharing the road. It’s also a good opportunity to “activate” some of the city’s public spaces, like this ride’s end-point at Lincoln Park, which otherwise would have been almost empty.

Photos tagged with firefly2012. The previous month was the River Run Ride.

Summer Fireflies, Riding Bikes

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