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Regatta Bike Ride marking 11th year

WORTHINGTON -- While participants in the 2017 Worthington Windsurfing Regatta hope to catch some wind for their sails, those taking part in the annual Regatta Bike Ride won't mind at all if they get an extra push from Mother Nature along the route.

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Participants prepare to exit Worthington's Centennial Park during the 2016 Regatta Bike Ride. (Tim Middagh / Daily Globe)

WORTHINGTON - While participants in the 2017 Worthington Windsurfing Regatta hope to catch some wind for their sails, those taking part in the annual Regatta Bike Ride won’t mind at all if they get an extra push from Mother Nature along the route.

This marks the 11th year of the annual Regatta Bike Ride, and organizer Kenton Meier is hoping for nice weather next Saturday for bicyclists taking part on one of the four routes identified for the ride.

The options for bicyclists include a 7-mile family trail ride, or a 15-, 30- or 50-mile bike route. Last year’s event drew approximately 30 participants, and Meier is hoping to grow participation for each of the routes this year.

All of the rides begin from Centennial Park at 9 a.m. June 10, with registration in the park from 8 to 9 a.m. Registration includes a dri-fit T-shirt and a coupon for a food item at one of the Regatta food vendors.

From Centennial Park, bicyclists will make their way to First Avenue Southwest, where participants in the 7-mile family trail ride will stick to the bike path for a ride around Worthington’s Lake Okabena. Those signing up for the 15-, 30- or 50-mile ride will follow First Avenue Southwest out of town, where markers will direct them along county roads.

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The 15-mile route stays fairly close to town, with the 30-mile route taking bicyclists out near Rushmore. The 50-mile route circles the greater Worthington area, and takes approximately 3 to 3.5 hours for most bicyclists to complete.

“We do provide rest areas out on the ride,” Meier said, adding that one stop is offered along the route for participants in the 15- and 30-mile rides, while two stops are offered along the 50-mile route. Each stop will offer water and snacks, and support vehicles will accompany the bicyclists on each of the three routes.

While there isn’t an organized bicycling club in Worthington, Meier said the ride has drawn participants from area bike clubs in the past.

All types of bicycles are welcome.

“It’s a fun time for those that enjoy riding their bike,” Meier said. “It’s a little different experience for those that normally just ride around the lake or in town to get out on the county roads.”

If you haven’t yet registered for the bike ride, you can still do so by contacting the Worthington Area Convention & Visitors Bureau at 372-2919, or plan to register Saturday morning at Centennial Park from 8 to 9 a.m. Bike helmets are required for all participants.

Proceeds from the bike ride will be used toward community programs.

Julie Buntjer became editor of The Globe in July 2021, after working as a beat reporter at the Worthington newspaper since December 2003. She has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism from South Dakota State University.
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