Be on the lookout for bicycles in the roadway.
During the week of September 6 – 13, BikeMaine will be visiting our region, with 350 riders visiting Westbrook, Winthrop,Gardiner, Boothbay Harbor, and Bath, and a lot of communities in between. Bath is one of six host communities on this year’s route, which begins and ends in Westbrook. Riders departing from Boothbay Harbor on day 6 of the tour will spend the night in Bath before leaving for Westbrook on the final leg of the course. The library was pleased to be asked to participate in Bike Maine by showing a film.
BikeMaine is an event sponsored by the Bicycle Coalition of Maine, the state’s leading bicycle advocacy group with over 5,000 members. The coalition supports bicycles as part of sustainable community development, and encourages bike routes and paths to make Maine a better place to cycle.
This year’s theme is “Pedaling the Waterways”, and the route will take cyclists along rushing rivers, tranquil lakes, and the Maine coast.
“BikeMaine is for riders to discover every corner of our state and celebrate the great riding found throughout Maine,” said BikeMaine Ride Chair Mark Ishkanian.
Cyclists will camp in a different host community each evening, eating meals prepared by local organizations. Wherever possible, support services, provisions, entertainment, and meals will be secured from host communities in an effort to benefit the local economy.
“Our community is proud to host BikeMaine,” said Patrick Wright, Executive Director of Gardiner Main Street and Gardiner’s Town Coordinator for BikeMaine. ”This ride gives us the opportunity to showcase our businesses and organizations, support our long term community improvement projects, and promote cycling as a healthy, family activity.”
Some of the fee the bicyclists pay to do the trip will go to the host communities, including Bath, to support bicycle initiatives.
The cyclists will be in Bath on September 12. They’ll be camping out near the Bath Area YMCA in the athletic fields adjacent to the Y before departing on their final leg of the trip to Westbrook on the 13th.
This is the second year Bike- Maine has happened. The first year, the route included a loop beginning in Orono, and including Dover-Foxcroft, Belfast, Castine, Bar Harbor, Camp Jordan (the Bangor YMCA camp) and back to the University of Maine on the final day.
Patten Free Library in Bath will hold a screening of “American Flyers” in conjunction with BikeMaine, to be held on Friday, September 12 at 1 p.m. The film is free and open to the public. In the film, sports physician Marcus Sommers (Kevin Costner) persuades his younger brother David to train with him for a three-day bicycle race across the Rocky Mountains, known as “The Hell of the West.” The film takes you on the road for an exciting world-class cycling competition as two brothers struggle to win a race and to regain the respect and affection they once shared.