Bicyclists take on DuSable Lake Shore Drive for annual 'Bike The Drive'

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Sunday, September 3, 2023
Bicyclists take on DLSD for annual 'Bike The Drive'
Street closures were in affect on DuSable Lake Shore Drive Sunday morning for the annual "Bike the Drive" Chicago event.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Thousand of bicyclists took to DuSable Lake Shore Drive on Sunday to participate in "Bike the Drive."

The annual event shuts down the street from Hollywood Avenue to 57th Street so people can enjoy a morning stroll on the drive. It unites thousands of avid riders from across Chicagoland and around the country.

"It's one of the great iconic roadways in the United States, maybe the world, and it's amazing. You're riding along Lake Shore Drive, you're on a highway, which you never get to ride on all year round," said "Bike the Drive" Bike Marshall Tom Osran.

The ride officially began at 6:30 a.m. and ran until 10:30 a.m. It is one the most scenic morning rides of the year.

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"You've got the beautiful lakefront. I mean, it's gorgeous. What a glorious morning we got for this," said Ed Petrosius, a cyclist from Antioch.

Round Lake Beach's Larry Nemeth was back on his bike one year after having open-heart surgery. He said cycling has changed his life.

"I love it. I get up every morning, and all I want to do is go out and ride a bike. I just want to get up and go out," Nemeth said.

Others, like Wilmette's Grant Leech, took on the 30-mile Lake Shore Drive loop for the very first time on Sunday morning.

"I just thought, 'What a great opportunity to see our beautiful city," Leech said.

All bicyclists had to be registered for the event, which was hosted by the Active Transportation Alliance. Money raised goes toward efforts to improve walking, biking and public transit across Chicagoland. Organizers said this is the perfect way to make a difference.

"Seeing all these folks out here happy, on two wheels, really just gives so much energy," said Clare McDermott with the Active Transportation Alliance. "You can feel the wind in your hair, you can hear the waves off Lake Michigan, and just the gentle click-clack of the bike chains."

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson sent the riders off, vowing to increase transportation options for the city.

"Whether you're on the West, South, Southeast, Southwest, North, no matter where you are, we have to make sure we invest in an equitable way," Johnson said.