Annual Bike the Bend

The sixth annual Bike the Bend was held on Saturday morning and was expected to bring out about 2,000 bikers.

The yearly event gives residents the chance to see the city from the slowed pace of a bicycle according to Bike the Bend Executive Director Jeanne Blad.

"It's a chance to explore the city on a bicycle. Things look very different when you're pedaling by opposed to whizzing by in a car. It is a family event. Everyone can ride, all ages, and any skill level," Blad said.

The ride winds through South Bend, Mishawaka, and other parts of St. Joseph County. Some of the landmarks on the 30 mile ride will include parks, distinctive neighborhoods like Historic West Washington Street and Copshaholm Garden at the History Center. 

“We had so many people tell us yesterday how much they look forward to this every year. We had a few say ‘I saw this online or I saw you on the news so we're just going to come down and try it because it looks like so much fun,'” Blad added.

However, there are some changes to the event this year. This is the first year that riders do not have priority when crossing vehicle-restricted routes that that intersect with traffic crossings in parts of South Bend.

“We have a lot of signage out and please just be aware of the signs, the roads are not closed. We prefer that cars wait if riders are going by until the riders are finished," she said.

This change is due to the lack of officers able to be present at the event, so they are taking matters into their own hands.

“All of our volunteers have worked really hard. We have more volunteers on the route assisting riders, making sure people are where they're suppose to be and yesterday we had a number of walk-ins saying ‘hey I think you need some help, what can I do to help?'”

Bland said there will be about 125 volunteers out for the event to help keep all the bikers safe.
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