This past Sunday (July 14), Gotriangle hosted an event called “bike to the ballpark” which encouraged cyclists to ride to the Bull’s game. I went with the family, and it was pretty fun.
Since we live quite close to the park, we decided to take the opportunity to swing by the Museum of Life and Science first to get a bit more time out on the road. Our route to the museum took us via Ellerbe and was essentially the first half of the route we used to get to the Eno a few weeks ago. The setup was pretty similar, but this weekend I towed the kid in the Burley Honey Bee behind my brand new Jamis Bosanova (from Durham Cycles) and the wife rode her Trek road bike rather than the hybrid.
I will point out that skinny tires suck on Ellerbe due to some root issues. The hybrid probably would’ve been smarter for my wife. There was also a ton of standing water and mud from the recent rain, which my fenders deflected from the trailer quite nicely.
On the way back to the park, I decided to specifically follow Durham’s posted bicycle route signage. Ellerbe ends at Trinity, and from there you can follow “bike path” signs which zig-zag around Washington, Corporation, etc and cut through Central Park on some sidewalks. I was left with a decidedly “meh” feeling about this – you only avoid a couple blocks of relatively low traffic roads this way. Next time I think I’ll skip the sidewalk tour and stick to the streets, even with the kiddie trailer.
We got to the park about twenty minutes before the first pitch, and it took a solid thirty minutes to get our bikes valet parked and get to our seats. I don’t know whether the turnout was greater than anticipated, but the workers were struggling to keep up with the influx of cyclists (I had read that there were 500 seats reserved for this particular event). It was really cool to see so many cyclists going to the game, though! I always love checking out some of the more interesting rides at events like this – at least one recumbent, an electric assist cargo bike, other funky things I want to own.
As part of the event, you could purchase special tickets which included a “goodie bag” – a gotriangle branded bell and a light, and some water bottles and such provided by retail partners. I always seem to need more of those safety lights, so I’ll put them to good use.
The actual tickets were the “cheap seats” in the outfield. In Sunday’s blazing hot sun, I found myself wishing for some shade, especially with the kid. Next time I’m thinking we should spring for the upgrade and sit behind the plate.
We left around the 7th inning, since the kid-o needs to be in bed by 8 or… bad things happen. On the way back home we ran into a couple of other cyclists who we followed all the way back to the house, and we were surprised to find out that they lived right down the street from us. As usual I was dragging a bit on the uphills with the trailer behind me, and the bratwurst and beer from the ballpark sure wasn’t helping anything.
At the end of the day it was a really nice evening on the bikes, and I really applaud the organizers for coming up with this event which seemed especially important in light of last week’s tragedy. A key component to making the roads safer for cyclists is to have more cyclists on the roads – the more we’re out there, the more drivers will be aware of us.