The annual Tweed Ride now starts and finishes in Oak Bay culminating in a celebratory picnic that coincides with the launch of Arts and Culture Week at Willows Beach Park.

Tweed Ride rolls in Oak Bay

The Tweed Ride is Aug. 8 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. with the start and finish at Willows

Even if you don’t ride a two-wheeler, organizers hope area residents will swing into the scene for the fifth annual Tweed Ride.

The start and finish of the ‘dandy urban bike ride’ moves to Willows Park this year and the ride rambles through Oak Bay streets.

Organizer Janet Besler hopes the public bring along a picnic and enjoy the party after the ride that emphasizes the lifestyle choice of cycling, promoting it as both transportation and fun.

“It’s a fun thing for families,” Besler said. “The first three years we were riders, the last two Greater Victoria Cycling Coalition has taken over organization.”

As a part of the GVCC mandate they encourage, and empower families to come out en mass to the relatively easy 15 kilometre ride.

“We really encourage families,to participate, part of the GVCC mandate is to promote cycling for all ages and abilities,” said said organizer Brenda Boyd, who serves as a sweep for the event. “Last year we had 221 riders out and 35 were under the age of six.”

A police escort and the ‘sweep’ ensures “nobody gets left behind,” Boyd said. Last year she convinced a youngster to finish the route in little trips from telephone pole to telephone pole.

This year she’ll shepherd stragglers into Willows Park for the first time as the Tweed Ride shifts to an Oak Bay start and finish.

During this event, silver teapots, gramophones and wicker baskets are the norm, not the unexpected. One rider has a trailer that folds out into a snappy bar.

“Everybody is ether dressed in period costume or their Sunday going out clothes,” Besler said.

The Tweed Ride is Aug. 8 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. with the start and finish at Willows. Pre-register and get tickets ($10) at tweedridevictoria.ca online.

“All the proceeds go to Bicycles for Humanity,” said Boyd. “The ship them over in a container and then they use the container as a shop.”

Last year they raised $1,200 for the cause locally, which supports areas of Africa. They send over bikes to be used for things such as promoting eduction by cutting a youths commute by hours or bicycle ambulances.