Kidical Mass Tucson: Kids Will Rule the Streets!

October 22, 2012

Remember Cyclovia from back in March?

Now it’s time for a family focused bike ride through Downtown neighborhoods with Kidical Mass (Get it? A play on critical mass).

Kidical Mass comes to the Children’s Museum on Oct. 27 with the ride starting at 10 a.m.

Kidical Mass is a national grassroots movement designed to provide an organized, safe, and fun family bike ride through city streets.

The ride heads over to Church Avenue, skirts the Tucson Convention Center, rides through the adobe wonderland that is Barrio Viejo to Santa Rosa Park before heading back to the Children’s Museum.

“We are reaching out to the youngest age that parents would ride their bikes with their kids,” said Kylie Walzak, event coordinator at the Living Street Alliance, with is staging Kidical Mass. “That can be pre-birth or past six-months old. Most bike carrier manufacturers don’t recommending riding with babies under six months old.”

Kidical Mass encourages kids up to 18 to join their parents and even “kids at heart” are heartily welcomed to join in.

“El Grupo Youth Cycling, they are our ride leaders,” Walzak said. “We want to show kids about to enter middle school that riding a bike is cool even if you could drive a car.”

Along with Living Street Alliance and El Grupo Youth Cycling, the Kidical Mass is presented by Pima County and City of Tucson Bicycle and Pedestrian Programs, Performance Bicycles, Outdoor Nation, and Merrell.

“Mechanics from BICAS and Performance Bicycles will be on hand if you need repairs,” Walzak said.”

Kidical Mass began in 2008 in Eugene, Oregon, organized by Shane Rhodes, who wanted to see more families excited about using their bikes. Since it’s inception, the movement has spread to communities across the globe all in the name of having fun – on a bike -with kids!

Families will practice pedaling with the kiddos during these short, leisurely, rides. Participants are encouraged to bring their helmets, however a limited supply of children’s helmets will be provided for free, courtesy of the City of Tucson Bicycle and Pedestrian Program. Families can also decorate their bikes in advance for increased visibility and for fun! All kids will receive stickers and “Kidical Mass Tucson” temporary tattoos.

“Tons of parking is available in front of the Children’s Museum and around Armory Park, but we encourage you to ride your bike to the event,” Walzak said.

This is a family-friendly, law-abiding ride designed to bring families together and ride safely as a group. Ride leaders and sweepers will be present to assist in making sure no one is left behind, but all parents are asked to take responsibility for their children on the road for the safety of all.

Kidical Mass is hosted by the local non-profit organization, Living Streets Alliance whose mission is to “promote healthy communities by empowering people to transform our streets into vibrant places for walking, bicycling, socializing, and play.” LSA is improving access for active modes of transportation in the region through outreach, education, advocacy and research.

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