New weekly bike ride will launch at Clarence mar­ket

The Buffalo News - - WEATHER - – Scott Scan­lon

T he Clarence Hol­low Farm­ers’ Mar­ket is the lone farm mar­ket in the state set up along a Rails-to-Trails bike and pedes­trian path. It makes sense to Me­lany Ar­ri­son that it also should be the first in the re­gion to fea­ture a weekly bi­cy­cle ride.

The Clarence res­i­dent – who of­ten can be seen around town on a bike – has put out a call for ride lead­ers and am­bas­sadors to help her carry out weekly 9 a.m. rides dur­ing the mar­ket, which runs 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. each Satur­day from June 1 to Oct. 12.

“Bik­ing is fun, and you’re get­ting ex­er­cise,” said Ar­ri­son, a mar­ried mother of three. “It’s a re­ally up­beat, pos­i­tive thing to do. When you bike ride, you get to know peo­ple you’ve never met be­fore. Our com­mu­nity, like all com­mu­ni­ties, could use that.”

Mar­ket or­ga­niz­ers agreed to al­low bike-re­lated busi­nesses and com­mu­nity groups to use vend­ing space for free dur­ing the com­ing sea­son and talk about bike safety or prod­ucts be­fore the start of each ride.

The new twists are part of a larger ef­fort.

“Our com­mu­nity is ripe for being a bi­cy­cle-friendly com­mu­nity, a le­git­i­mate one, just like we’re a ‘Right to Farm Com­mu­nity,’ ” Ar­ri­son said. “It’s great for real es­tate values and will en­hance the com­mu­nity over­all.”

Ar­ri­son, 43, has turned much of her civic at­ten­tion lend­ing her voice to ef­forts to add bike lanes to Main Street, which has hap­pened dur­ing re­cent years, and Sheri­dan Drive, which is planned.

Tom’s Pro Bike own­ers Tom and Va­lerie Lonzi, whose shops in­clude one on Tran­sit Road near the start of the Clarence Bike Path, are among those who have signed on to help Ar­ri­son with the weekly bike rides.

Other bike en­thu­si­asts also have vol­un­teered but more are needed. Those who are in­ter­ested can email Ar­ri­son at [email protected]

Ar­ri­son hopes to see bik­ing en­thu­si­asts from across the re­gion come to Clarence Hol­low for the Satur­day morn­ing rides, which will start and end at the mar­ket bike cor­ral.

The mar­ket and cor­ral each sit along the West Shore Trail, a bike and pedes­trian thor­ough­fare that con­nects with the Peanut Line Trail fur­ther east of the mar­ket.

Both trails are con­sid­ered part of what is of­ten called the Clarence Bike Path.

Each will run 10 to 12 miles, last about an hour and vary at least a bit.

“You can en­joy the bike path in ei­ther di­rec­tion very safely and rea­son­ably,” she said. “We want a whole­some com­mu­nity event for all ages.”

Me­lany Ar­ri­son leads the ef fort to bring weekly bike rides to the Clarence Hol­low Farm­ers’ Mar­ket this sea­son.

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