Ride & Walk 4 Art Bicycle & Walk
March 19, 2023
Cyclists and walkers will enjoy the rolling green hills and rural roads of West Calaveras County during the Calaveras County Arts Council’s Seventh Annual Ride & Walk 4 Art on March 19, 2023. With three bicycle ride choices—30, 45, and 70 miles—or a 4.5 mile walk along the shores of New Hogan Lake—there’s something for everybody.
This year, organizer Rob Williams, chair of the Motherlode Bicycle Coalition, the organization that helps manage and coordinate the event, has freshened the popular fundraiser that supports the arts in Calaveras County schools. The biggest change is a new starting venue. The new site, the Jenny Lind Veterans Memorial Park in Valley Springs, offers many benefits. “It’s just a better site,” Williams said. “There is parking for over 200 cars. There are indoor bathrooms. And it starts and ends the ride at a safe neighborhood location. No one is crossing any highways to start the ride.”
“I also like supporting the veterans center. It has really nice amenities and it’s a brand new facility.”
Another change has been the addition of a Metric Plus Century Ride, 70 miles of hill climbs, downhill coasting, and heart-thumping views. “On a clear day you can see across the Central Valley, and into the High Sierra,” Williams said.
“But you don’t have to cycle all 70 miles,” he said. Designed to offer cyclists a choice for their fitness level, the Century revolves around the central 45-mile route, with two out-and-back rides along the way; take all four branch rides to make 70 miles, or add the mileage that is just right for you. Williams cautioned that riders should honestly assess their abilities. Some of the hill climbs are intense.
If you get stuck on the ride with a flat tire, or you just run out of air yourself, volunteers with the Calaveras Amateur Radio Association are stationed at key points along the ride to call up a sag wagon. Two local bike shops will provide mechanical assistance along the route: Mountain Pedaler Bicycles from Angels Camp and Bear Valley Bicycles from Arnold.
“We’re really proud of our safety record, and of making sure cyclists feel comfortable on the road,” Williams said, emphasizing that road safety control will be available from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the day of the event, and the American Legion Ambulance service will be on site.
Williams was pleased to announce that after the last two years of Covid-precautions, all rest stops will be fully stocked, and barbecue will be served at the end of the ride. “I’d like to thank Moke Hill Nuts & Candies for leading off with a donation,” he said. He gave a nod to the volunteers who will be stationed at the rest stops. “They’ll take every health precaution to keep riders safe.”
If cycling isn’t your jam, you can enjoy a sedate walk along the Cameron Trail starting at the New Hogan Lake Over Look near the Army Corps of Engineers Headquarters. Hike as much of the 4.5-mile trail as you wish, then head over at noon to the veterans hall for lunch.
One of the most loved and welcome parts of the event is the chicken-in-a-barrel barbecue at the end of the ride. This year, Cynthia Przybyla will organize and cook the dinner with the help of volunteers Luis and Patty Luna. Thanks to a donation of Calaveras Barrel Blend Spice from the Spice Tin in Murphys, the chicken will be extra tasty.
Past participants say that this event is the best local bike and walk event, with plenty of volunteers, a friendly non-competitive community atmosphere, and the proceeds go to a worthy cause.
Ride & Walk 4 Art Supports Arts in Education
Ride & Walk 4 Art supports the Calaveras County Arts Council’s mission to support arts education in Calaveras public schools. Every year the fundraising event Ride & Walk 4 Art raises between $4000 and $6000.
Ride & Walk 4 Art helps pay for many things: art supplies for classes, visiting artists, school theater projects, art days at elementary schools. But most importantly, this fundraiser provides the resources for schools to help students make sense of their lives as they learn critical real-world skills like creative thinking, resilience, problem solving, and project management. Studies show that children with access to the arts fare better in school and in life.
Just by having fun riding a bike, participants give the gift of art to Calaveras County students. That’s a pretty good time for all.
Register at www.rideandwalk4art.com
For more information:
Or Kathy Mazzaferro