A celebration of cycling | ParkRecord.com

A celebration of cycling

David Hampshire

The Park Record

If Cindy Bywater has her way, in future years this will be the event that kicks off the biking season in Park City.

Bywater is the underwriting and development director for Park City radio station KPCW. And she is also the driving force behind Saturday’s KPCW Cycling Festival, which is being billed as a celebration for lovers of all types of cycling, "fat tire, skinny tire and training wheels."

To be held in conjunction with Saturday’s Tour de Park City, the festival will be headquartered at The Yard at Bonanza Park. While the serious road cyclists are on their way to Evanston and back, the festival and its sponsors will be offering riding clinics, bike-maintenance seminars, and guided mountain-bike rides in the Park City area.

The day will begin at 7 a.m. with the start of the 157-mile Tour de Park City event at Richardson Flat. The road course will take riders through Coalville, Chalk Creek and Evanston before returning via the Mirror Lake Highway and Kamas. That will be followed by the start of other Tour de Park City events ranging from 15 to 100 miles.

Meanwhile, at 9 a.m., All Resort Express shuttles are scheduled to carry mountain bikes and their riders from The Yard to the Empire Lodge for the start of the first Festival event, the Mid-Mountain Ride, hosted by Jans and White Pine.

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At 9:30 a.m., Cole Sport will hold a Bike Maintenance 101 clinic.

Rides and clinics will continue throughout the day. Bywater said there is no fee for any of the day’s events except the Tour de Park City.

Scheduled at 11 a.m. is the Fender Bender ride, which "might be the most popular ride," Bywater says. Participants on cruiser bikes will take a tour of town with strategic stops at Wasatch Brew Pub, the High West Distillery & Saloon, and Squatters Roadhouse Grill.

At noon the food station and "Libations Garden" are due to open at The Yard, and the first of three live bands, Lash Larue, will take the stage. Following at two-hour intervals will be the bands PatWa and Switchback. The Tour de Park City awards ceremony is due to start at 5 p.m. For a complete schedule of events go to kpcw.org

Bywater says that people can reserve places on the rides by sending an e-mail to cbywater@kpcw.or or calling her at 649-9004, ext. 305.

She describes this year’s event as a "pilot program" that is planned to grow into a three-day destination event during the last week of June next year.

She notes that other communities host events dedicated to a specific type of cycling Moab’s Fat Tire Festival, for example. But she knows of few events that cater to all aspects of the sport.

Bywater, who notes that KPCW has always enjoyed hosting community-outreach events, hopes this festival will become a major source of income for the station, which is expecting substantial losses in federal public funding.

"We need to make up close to a $100,000 deficit that we’ll be facing within two years," she said.

For more details on the radio station’s plans for the annual event, see the guest editorial by KPCW General Manager Larry Warren on page A-15.

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