What's the furthest you've ever been on Chicago's Lake Front Trail? If you live on the north side of the city, maybe it's Buckingham Fountain. Maybe it's McCormick Place. Or if you've run the Ready to Run 20 Miler it might even be just past the Museum of Science and Industry. But starting this weekend with the opening of the South Lake Shore Drive extension you can go all the way to 92nd avenue, an extra 2 miles!
For those of us who bike this is quite exciting. According to the Chicago Tribune, this extension gives cyclists "a bicycle lane in each direction between 79th and 87th streets and shared vehicle-bike lanes south of 87th." Previously we only had narrow streets if we wanted to venture beyond the end of the trail at 71st street.
To celebrate the opening of a new roadway that will open up a part of the city that has been inaccessible for over 100 years and transform the former U.S. Steel South Works property into a vibrant neighborhood, the Chicago Lakeside Festival on Saturday, October 26th will feature a 5K run/walk and a Team Time Trial Cycling Event starting at 9AM that will let participants get their first taste of the 600-acre site.
The festival then continues with a farmers market featuring locally-sourced food, refreshments, local artisans, and live music. The festival will also include family friendly activities such as a pumpkin patch, face painting, hayrides and more.
Plus, from 11:00 am to 3:30 pm South Lake Shore Drive will be open to cyclists only. Other than Bike the Drive it's nearly impossible to find a time when you get the street to yourself as a cyclist!
Sadly, I am SWAMPED on Saturday and, as such, will be unable to attend the event. Bummer, too, because I'd love to see a cycling event in person. So, I hope someone else can go and tell me all about it because it's sure to be a great time.
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