TUPELO – The city will celebrate cycling next week with a series of bike-related activities, including a memorial ride for fallen cyclist John Paul Frerer.
Tupelo Bike Safety Week runs Monday through Friday, with a free public event each day to raise awareness about bicycling and bike safety.
“Just knowing the rules is really important, and that’s a huge reason we’re doing this,” said Danielle Frerer, sister of the Tupelo High School senior who died in while cycling in August 2009 when a truck struck him.
“Lots of people are out cycling but don’t know what side of the road to ride on, or to wear helmets and bright colors,” Frerer said. “We hope to educate the community a little better, especially since it’s summer and more people will be out on bikes.”
Frerer and her family spearheaded bike safety week after seeing similar efforts elsewhere in the country. They teamed with community leaders, volunteers and businesses to hold the events.
It starts Monday with free bicycle inspections at Trails & Treads and Pacelines. An evening bike ride is planned Tuesday, and a memorial ride will take place Wednesday to honor John Paul Frerer and all other fallen cyclists. Free food and music will be provided afterward.
Children will get free bike helmets and safety lessons from the Tupelo Police Department on Thursday, and National Bike To Work Day caps the week on Friday.
“John Paul once said to me, ‘Mom, now that I’m cycling, I notice more cyclists on the road,’” said Liria Frerer. “Sometimes it takes knowing a cyclist to become more aware. Our hope is to promote awareness and to make something positive out of our loss.”
Contact Emily Le Coz at (662) 678-1588 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bike safety week
– Monday – Trails & Treads and Pacelines will offer free bike evaluations.
– Tuesday – The Tuesday Night Bike Club will lead a community ride starting at 5 p.m. at St. Luke’s Methodist Church. All levels of cyclists are welcome.
– Wednesday – A six-mile Silent Ride will honor John Paul Frerer and others who have died while riding. It starts at 6:15 p.m. at Fairpark and will end with free food and live music by The Bonfire Orchestra. All level of cyclists are welcome.
– Thursday – The Tupelo Police Department will hold a citywide Bike Rodeo for children from 3:30-6:30 p.m. at Robins-Noble Park near Church Street Elementary. Children will get free helmets and learn bicycle safety. It’s a come-and-go event.
– Friday – It’s National Bike to Work Day. Breakfast stations will be set up at Starbucks, the CDF parking lot, and the walking track at NMMC for commuters to refuel on their way to the office.
– For more information or to volunteer, visit the Tupelo Bike
Safety Week Facebook page or call Danielle Frerer at (662)
Emily Le Coz/NEMS Daily Journal