May 30, 2009 – Free Family Bike Fun and the Major Taylor Cycling Club

Major Taylor racing in Paris
Image via Wikipedia

Saturday,  May 30 is Beyond Bikes Day – a family friendly bicycle celenbration for beginners – I wan’t to make sure to point out that this is beginner friendly – I know we have posted lots of bike information but I am a bike begginner myself and I know that it can be intimidating.  

Beyond Bikes Day is organized by Venture Outdoors and the Major Taylor Cycling Club

The event will be held Saturday, May 30, at the Kingsley Association Community Center at 6435 Frankstown Avenue from noon to 3 p.m. This particular event will encourage biking as a family-friendly activity, as well as showcase some of the bike lanes in Pittsburgh, particularly the bike lane along East Liberty Boulevard. Riders are encouraged to bring their own bikes and helmets. A limited number of loaner bikes will be available. Raffle prizes will be given away throughout the day, including kids’ bikes and biking gear.

I had seen a reference to the Major Taylor Club before but I didn’t know much about it.  The Pittsburgh Chapter is a project of Pitt’s Center for Minority Health.  

Do you know Major Taylor? 

In the late 1890’s bicycle races drew crowds that filled Madison Square Garden; the biggest draw of all was Marshall W. Major Taylor. Having become the undisputed black champion of America, Taylor overcame racial segregation and intolerance to become the one-mile sprint world champion in 1899, and by the end of 1898 held seven world cycling records! 

Why is this important? 

The University of Pittsburgh‘s Center for Minority Health and Adventure Cycling Association share the goal of encouraging people from all walks of life and cultural backgrounds, including African Americans, to explore the landscapes and history of America by bicycle. That is why these two organizations are committed to creating an Underground Railroad Bicycle Route. Throughout history black people have used bicycles as a mode of transportation. Both Major Taylor and the Underground Railroad represent the struggle to freedom from slavery and the challenge to eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities.  

More info on the Pittsburgh Major Taylor Cycling Club is availble here.  Also the blogger Pittsburgh Guy has a great post about the Major Taylor Club and their ride to show support for the families of the police officers that will killed in April.

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  • I'm sure that you didn't mean to post the message about the Family Bike Fun on May 30th. I think you may have meant June. I read this site everyday and I just wanted to point this out. Thanks.

  • Lindsay

    Hi Bob- something funny has been going on where it keeps making old posts new again. I have the good folks at working to help figure out what the issue is. Thanks for reading. – Lindsay

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