The start of the 2012 community bike ride

Pedal power rules the road in Oak Bay

Annual festival and community ride happens this Sunday

It’s all about pedal power at the second annual Oak Bay Bike Festival and community ride at Willows Beach on Sunday.

Event coordinator Lister Farrar said the festival is about celebrating everything having to do with cycling and encouraging bike use within the community.

“The idea behind the bike festival and community ride is for people to consider bicycling to do something they enjoy,” Farrar said. “That it’s not just for hardcore sports or fitness, or just a commuting tool.”

The event starts at 8 a.m. with a breakfast put on by the Kiwanis Club. There will be a six-kilometre community bike ride between Willows Beach and the Royal Victoria Yacht Club, which saw 150 riders last year. Also included are themed bike rides led by experts in architecture, art and food. Each expert will present their unique tour at 11 a.m., allowing riders to choose which area interests them the most. Maps will also be available for self-guided tours or for those who want to do all three. There will also be a bike train in the morning, leading kids from Carnarvon Park and Monterey middle school to Willows Beach.

“There will be guides leading the bike train and identifying certain expectations such as staying in a single file,” Ferrar said, adding he expects the bike train to start at either 9 or 9:30 a.m.

“The idea is so parents can have some help in getting their kids to follow good bicycling practice on the road instead of just winging it.”

Along with bike rides and tours, there will be workshops, bicycle fitting with a physiotherapist, bike safety checks, a trials riding demonstration, a giant air bag for bike jumps for kids, bicycle displays, demonstration riders, a skills workshop and a bike rodeo with the Oak Bay police.

There will also be a cyclo-cross course race on the grass in the park, with modified road bikes.

Farrar estimated about 500 people attended last year’s event and he is hoping that number will grow this year.

The event is sponsored by the Oak Bay Kiwanis and the Municipality of Oak Bay.

editor@oakbaynews.com