New weekly bike ride will launch at Clarence market
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.