ELIZABETH, NJ – Ride marshals gathered May 10 for a practice run of the route for the 13th Annual Tour de Elizabeth, taking place Sunday, May 22, at 9 a.m., beginning and ending at City Hall, rain or shine.
“I love it,” said Rudy Burgos, a dedicated cyclist who has been a tour marshal for five years. “Every day after work, I ride at least 10 miles around Warinanco Park.”
This year’s theme for the 15-mile recreational bicycle tour is “Bikes and Bites,” showcasing the city’s rich, culinary variety. “It’s a different view of the city,” said Jonathan Phillips, executive director of Groundwork Elizabeth. “We are highlighting the ethnic diversity and quality of restaurants we have here in Elizabeth. People can see these eateries as they ride by, then come back to enjoy a great restaurant.”
The Tour attracts serious riders from as far away as Arlington, Massachusetts, and Salem, Connecticut, as well as those who have to dust off their bikes or hunt for them in the garage.
To sign up, riders can log onto http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2402703 , mail in to 13th Annual Tour De Elizabeth Application or call 908-289-0262. Walkups on the day of the Tour are accepted as well. Registration is also available on the City of Elizabeth, Groundwork Elizabeth, Union County, and http://www.goelizabethnj.com/ websites.
Riding along with the marshals was Mary Gibbons, an administrator with Elberon Development Corporation, a long time supporter of Groundwork Elizabeth. “We come from a family business, and we feel that giving back is very important,” she explained. “We have always felt that way. The community gives to us, and we reciprocate.”
Helmets are required for all, and riders are requested to arrive early. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. at Elizabeth's City Hall, located at 50 Winfield Scott Place.
The event is hosted by the Mayor and City of Elizabeth, Union County’s HEART grant program, Groundwork Elizabeth, the Elizabeth Development Company, the Elizabeth Avenue Partnership, the Historic Midtown Special Improvement District, the Greater Elizabeth Chamber of Commerce, the Elizabeth Destination Marketing Organization, and Elizabethtown Gas Company. Sponsorships are still available.