TRURO – An annual bicycling event promoting healthy living will soon take place in Truro.
The eighth annual Nova Scotia Heartland Bike Tour travels throughout the province between July 6 and 12; the Truro event is July 8, rain or shine.
Participants will gather on Inglis Place at Hub Cycle for a 9:30 a.m. start.
This year there will be two bike rides – 16 km and 52 km – offered, starting at the same time, said area co-ordinator Raj Makkar.
“In the past there was one bike ride but feedback said it was too long for some people, so we are offering both this year … to encourage more people to get involved,” he said.
The non-competitive ride will go from the Esplanade to Willow Street, onto Truro Heights and Old Barns, then to Shortts Lake, Brookfield and end in Truro’s Victoria Park. A police escort will lead the group and the route will be marked with signage.
A variety of healthy snacks will be offered at the park upon return. There will also be facepainting, draws for multiple bikes, free T-shirts and live entertainment at the bandshell.
Makkar said the bike ride has multiple benefits: to increase physical activity, help sustain overall health, and promote family togetherness. This year, the goal is getting more youth and beginners to participate.
Last year, there were about 100 participants, between the ages of 12 and 60 plus, and Makkar hopes to see that number increase this year.
“It’s a family oriented event and spending time with family seems to be harder to do … this is a fun, free way to do that,” he said, adding, “physical activity in Nova Scotia is a bit behind compared to other provinces. But we are (gaining) in leaps and bounds in our county, especially with places like the Rath Eastlink Community Centre and walking trails.”
Makkar also reminds people of the safety aspect. Participants should keep hydrated with water and helmets must be worn. If a rider doesn’t have access to a helmet, they can contact Makkar for one. He can be reached at email@example.com
Registration for the event should be done online at www.heartlandtour.ca, by going to the community section, clicking Truro and registration.