Road riding, dirt jumping, and Swamp Rabbit “Freak Bike” costumes for cyclists of all ages and styles
The Upstate bicycling season kicks off this month with three days of road cycling, mountain biking, and fun events for the whole family. The second annual Greenville Health System Swamp Rabbit “Cyclebration” offers the opportunity to meet fellow cyclists and community members, see new and different events, and support the efforts of Greenville County Recreation District in beautifying our Upstate. Proceeds from the weekend’s festivities benefit development of county parks and cycling trails. All events will start and finish in Gateway Park, the off-road bike skills park completed just last year in downtown Travelers Rest.
While most cycling events focus on either road or off-road cycling, Cyclebration is unique in that it includes road rides, mountain biking, cyclocross, a youth race, and family-friendly fun rides. Gateway Park’s compact layout makes for easy spectating, and proximity to the amenities of Travelers Rest allows for an easy lunch or dinner nearby. Entrance to the park is free for spectators; participation costs $15 per off-road event, or a “Gateway MTB Weekend Pass” registers a participant in all of the weekend’s off-road events for $30 (register here). Registration for road events is $20-40 depending on distance (register here).
3/28/14 • Events begin Friday evening with a costumed parade-style “Freak Bike” ride from Travelers Rest toward Greenville and back; riders of all ages and bikes of all kinds are welcome (start 6:00pm at Sunrift Adventures).
3/29/14 • Saturday’s busy docket starts with 70- and 40-mile road rides through Greenville County, hosted and supported by Greenville’s largest road cycling club, the Greenville Spinners (start times 8:00am and 9:00am, respectively). A family-friendly 10-mile ride along the GHS Swamp Rabbit Trail starts at 10:00am. Back in Gateway Park, the Upstate chapter of the Southern Off-Road Bicycle Association (Upstate SORBA) will host a youth-only mountain bike race (11:30am). The afternoon will see Gateway Park’s latest cyclocross race, a wild and often muddy event on road bikes adapted for off-road obstacles (4:00pm). Saturday’s events conclude with a casual, family-friendly bonfire and bicycle drag races at Sunrift Adventures (7:00pm).
3/30/14 • Sunday will cap the weekend with Upstate SORBA’s “Skills de Quatro,” a four-part bicycle skills challenge that includes short-track cross country riding, timed laps of Gateway Park’s dirt jumps and pump track, and a timed mountain bike trials course (10:00am). Awards will be announced at the end of the day.
Cycling has been booming in the Upstate. Outdoor Magazine recently ranked the Blue Ridge, including Greenville and Travelers Rest, as the #2 cycling destination in the world (#1 being the entire country of Scotland)! Over 400,000 trail users visit the GHS Swamp Rabbit Trail each year, bringing economic prosperity to areas along the Trail, especially Travelers Rest. Cyclebration is a great chance for all Upstate residents to spectate, participate, and celebrate the growth of bicycling in Greenville County and the Upstate.