Monday, April 16, 2012

CicLAvia Round Up: A Perfect Day for a Bike Ride

CicLAvia

What a great day for a bike ride. We installed our brand-new bike rack and headed downtown for Sunday's CicLAvia -- which, according to the L.A. Times, made us four of the estimated 100,000 who took part in the popular event. With 10 miles of L.A. streets closed to traffic, bikers, joggers, walkers and even parents with strollers took to the car-free streets to leisurely ride and take in the sights.

We've participated in past CicLAvia events, but normally Maria and I walk while Evan rides his bike and Nathan sits in his stroller. But no more -- with the bike rack, we were all finally able to take full advantage of the event. We rode through downtown; south to the African American Firefighters Museum (on Central near the 10); east to Hollenbeck Park in Boyle Heights (on the other side of the 4th Street bridge); and through Little Tokyo on our way back to City Hall.

We even grabbed some food from local stands; and more food later from trucks parked at Hollenbeck. Plus, we managed to make it back to our car right at 4, when streets re-opened to traffic. It was a fantastic day, as the L.A. Times notes:

Sunday, which marked the fourth version of the event, tested the city's flexibility as cyclists invaded downtown, Dodgers fans attended a home game up the hill and the Lakers faithful poured into L.A. Live — all at roughly the same time. And somehow the city still seemed to function. The idea of booting cars off the roads and turning the asphalt over to cyclists and pedestrians first took hold as a weekly ciclovĂ­a in Colombia more than 30 years ago and was later adopted by cities elsewhere in Latin America and in the United States. The festival was an immediate hit in L.A. and quickly became the city's marquee event for pedestrians and cyclists.
The one portion of CicLAvia we didn't get a chance to ride was the spur to MacArthur Park. Next time! Here are some shots from our day pedaling on the streets of Los Angeles:

CicLAvia
Riding down Spring Street.

CicLAvia
Jump rope break!

CicLAvia
Things you notice when taking your time on bike around downtown: "Dancing Girls."

CicLAvia
Riding through the garment district.

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Just $4 for two chicken tacos and a pupusa at this spot along the 9th Street "Pinata District" food stands.

CicLAvia
Memories! The Coca-Cola ship building (at Central and Pico) was where our second Great Los Angeles Walk, in 2007, started!

CicLAvia
A band performs outside the African American Firefighters Museum, on Central across the street from Coca-Cola.

CicLAvia
CicLAvia's South LA stop.

CicLAvia
Little Tokyo.

CicLAvia
Riding through the Arts District.

CicLAvia
On the 4th Street bridge.

CicLAvia
View from the 4th Street bridge (looking east), with snow-capped mountains in the distance.

CicLAvia
View of downtown from the 4th Street bridge (looking west), with train tracks below.

CicLAvia
More tracks below!

CicLAvia
Over the L.A. river, as an Amtrak train speeds by.

CicLAvia
CicLAvia takes over Hollenbeck Park in Boyle Heights. Food trucks, rock climbing, music and more.

CicLAvia
Enjoying the fountain at Hollenbeck Park

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