While Southern California has become something of a thriving center of bicycle culture, what with rides like the Santa Monica Museum of Art's annual tool-around and the ever-popular CicLAvia, improvements in both cycle safety and awareness must still be made, and certainly outside of those larger events.
The organizers behind the Newport Beach Memorial Bike Ride, which is set to roll on Sunday, Oct. 28 at Newport Center Drive and Santa Rosa, have a number of important messages to share concerning just this.
In separate incidents within 24 hours in September, two cyclists died after they were hit by cars in the Orange County city -- and the ride will both honor their memories and publicize the real need for car-cycle awareness.
Other cyclists who've also been in accidents with autos will be honored as well, with the hope that their legacies and a major ride will raise the flag on safety first for both drivers and riders.
Bettering local bike lanes is a paramount goal of the Bicycle Safety Improvement Fund, which the Memorial Bike Ride will help fund. More signs along the Coast Highway are also in the works.
A few things to note: While this is indeed a Newport Beach ride, organizers are sending out word to all SoCal bike clubs and groups to join. Also? The City of Newport Beach will provide a $3 to $1 match for donations and funds raised up to $450,000, meaning your dollars'll work even harder.
For more info on the ride, the message, and how to lend a hand whether you can make the event or not, check out the memorial page.