It’s that time of year again when the rural roads of Lopez Island fill with hundreds of cycling enthusiasts. On Saturday, April 29, at 8 a.m., the Lopez Chamber of Commerce will present the annual, extremely popular non-competitive Tour de Lopez.
“In the past few years, we’ve pushed right around 900,” said Christa Campbell, director of the Lopez Chamber of Commerce, and master of volunteers. “We usually get about 30 or more people who just show up on Saturday We try to keep it under 1000.”
There are four routes for riders to choose from, varying in length and difficulty: a 5-mile, 12-mile, 17-mile and 31-mile. The two starting points, Lopez Center and Odlin County Park, will be marked by uniquely designed recycled bicycles. Biking paths were once outlined using chalk, it was soon discovered that rain would wash the marks away, thus the tradition of using upcycled bikes began.
Holly B’s Bakery will be providing sweet treats at all the routes’ rest stops. The Galley will be serving up a three-course barbecue lunch that will await cyclists at the end of their routes at Lopez Center. Desert will be freshly baked cookies made by students at Lopez School. The music of Los Hermanos will serenade you while you eat.
On the evening before the big event, the fourth annual Bite of Lopez will kick off at the Lopez Center’s outdoor pavilion at 5 p.m. Several local restaurants will be selling savory and sweet delights for you to taste. Local beer will be on tap and Hears 2 You! DJ Bill Johnson will be mixing the mood music.
“We’re looking forward to both of those events,” said Campbell. “Tell everyone they’re welcome, especially locals.”