Canadian Cyclist


July 18/03 1:11 am - Hamilton Community Bike Rally Nixed by Hamilton Council Delays

Posted by Editoress on 07/18/03

Community Bike Rally Will Not Happen
Courtesy Hamilton 2003

The Hamilton 2003 Festival Organizing Committee today announced that the proposed Community Bike Rally for Sunday, October 5, prior to the Road World Championships would not be held. The Community Bike Rally would have offered participants the opportunity to ride a slightly modified version of the World Championship course, in a once of a lifetime opportunity. The intent of the Community Bike Rally was to be a family-oriented event and to serve as a rallying point for the community in a kickoff to the Road World Championships, while minimizing the impact on the community. Proceeds from the Rally would have been directed to fundraising efforts for the Rotary Wellness Centre.

In a meeting on July 9, a decision to vote on approval for the Community Bike Rally had been tabled by Hamilton City Council until July 23. Following the decision to delay the approval of the Bike Rally, the Festival Committee held extensive discussions with the representatives of the 12 Hamilton area Rotary Club and the Event Organizer, Lake-to-Lake Events Inc. to discuss the feasibility of successfully organizing the Bike Rally in just over ten and a half weeks. All concerned agreed there was just not enough time because of the circumstances and the delay in approval, so the decision was made not to pursue the Community Bike Rally any further.

The Hamilton 2003 Festival Committee made its first presentation on the Community Bike Rally, a Draft of Events, to City Staff on March 27. An update to the plan was subsequently presented to staff on April 11 and a SEAT presentation was made on May 16. On June 25th, Steve Bauer, an Olympic Silver Medalist who wore the yellow jersey in the Tour de France, and the Lake-to-Lake Events Inc. group made a presentation on the Community Bike Rally to the Hearing Sub-Committee and the item was tabled until July 2nd when the item passed by a 6-4 vote and was referred to Council on July 9. As mentioned, the Community Bike Rally was tabled at that meeting until July 23.

Festival Chairman Jack Pelech commented, "We are disappointed that the Community Bike Rally will not take place but believe strongly we have an exceptional week of Festival Events planned for residents and spectators. We would like to thank the Staff of the City of Hamilton and the Hamilton Police Service, for all their hard work and effort in the planning and development of the concept for the Community Bike Rally. The Road World Championships will kick off with the Opening Ceremonies at Copps Coliseum on October 5 and the Festival Week will be a celebration of Canadian culture. We invite everyone to get involved in the Hamilton 2003 Festival and welcome the world to Hamilton."

The Hamilton 2003 Festival will be a week-long Celebration of Canadian Culture from October 5 to 12, complementing the Road World Cycling Championships. The Festival will get started on September 24 with the United Way "Gear up for World Cycling" Stationary Bike Challenge; other festival events include the Opening Ceremonies on October 5, a Gala Dinner on October 10, an Aboriginal Festival at Bayfront Park, the Downtown and International Village BIAs' "Rib Row", Hamilton Regional Arts Council's rooftop arts marketplace at Jackson Square, events at the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce and "Mohawk In Motion" at Mohawk College. For more information on the Hamilton 2003 Road World Championships and Festival, visit the official web site or phone (905) 524-3378.


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