Cycle N.C.’s 2012 Spring Ride is back

Published 7:35 pm Friday, April 13, 2012

Some cyclists are camping out along Washington’s waterfront this weekend. These tents are adjacent to the Washington-Beaufort County Chamber of Commerce. (WDN Photo/Mike Voss)

Tent villages along the waterfront, one downtown parking lot looking like an RV campground and portable showers — Cycle North Carolina’s Spring Ride is in Washington for the weekend.

More than 1,000 cyclists are expected to pedal their way around the area and participate in social activities during their stay in Washington.

“This is my third one,” said Alper Ender from Raleigh when asked how many Cycle North Carolina rides he’s been in.

“This is my fourth,” said his riding partner, Dena Ali, also from Raleigh.

Neither has been to Washington before.

“I want to see Washington, mainly, as see places around. I just love going North Carolina and getting to see new places I normally wouldn’t go to. It’s a unique experience,” Ender said Friday morning.

“Same for me. We love to ride bikes. We love to ride in new spots. Being in Raleigh, it’s fun to come to the coast,” Ali said Friday morning as she and Ender were preparing for a morning ride.

Ali said activities such as kayaking and social functions are planned for the riders, she and Ender plan to “hit the coffee shop after riding and do some reading.”

Also making her first visit to Washington is Ruth Roldan from York, S.C. Roldan plans to ride in her third “century” event. A 100-mile bicycle ride is termed a century.

“This is my third time,” she said about participating in a Cycle North Carolina ride.

“Seriously, for the last three years,” she said when asked how long she’s been cycling.

Roldan said that for her cycling is more than just riding a bike.

“This is more of a lifestyle. If I do two centuries a year, that keeps me practicing all year. It gives me goals. I’m a grandma. I love it because the cycling keeps me off medications, keeps diabetes at bay. It’s a health, preventive-maintenance thing,” she said moments after checking in at the registration area Friday morning. “I also just really enjoy it. You meet really neat people. It’s really inspiring to meet — like some of the people in my bicycle club are 80. They’re 80, and they ride circles around me.”

The Washington Tourism Development Authority and the Washington-Beaufort County Chamber of Commerce reminds motorists in the area to share the road this weekend as cyclists will be riding on routes throughout Beaufort County and the region, including rural areas, this weekend. Cyclists’ safety is a top priority this weekend, according to an email from the two organizations.

They also noted that many of the cyclists have not visited the area before.

“Be sure to welcome them and offer some true BoCo hospitality!” reads the email.

Volunteers may still be needed the remainder of the weekend at specific rest stops on the routes through the area. Those rest stops (and the day when volunteers are needed) follow: Grimesland Park (Sunday), Belhaven Community Chamber of Commerce (Saturday) and the Aurora Fossil Museum (Sunday). Volunteers simply need to show up, all necessary supplies are provided by Cycle North Carolina.

Persons interested in serving as volunteers should call 252-948-9415, ext. 2.

About Mike Voss

Mike Voss is the contributing editor at the Washington Daily News. He has a daughter and four grandchildren. Except for nearly six years he worked at the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Va., in the early to mid-1990s, he has been at the Daily News since April 1986.
Journalism awards:
• Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service, 1990.
• Society of Professional Journalists: Sigma Delta Chi Award, Bronze Medallion.
• Associated Press Managing Editors’ Public Service Award.
• Investigative Reporters & Editors’ Award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Public Service Award, 1989.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Investigative Reporting, 1990.
All those were for the articles he and Betty Gray wrote about the city’s contaminated water system in 1989-1990.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Investigative Reporting, 1991.
• North Carolina Press Association, Third Place, General News Reporting, 2005.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Lighter Columns, 2006.
Recently learned he will receive another award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Lighter Columns, 2010.
4. Lectured at or served on seminar panels at journalism schools at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Maryland, Columbia University, Mary Washington University and Francis Marion University.

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