Ciclovia, (pronounced: seek-low-VEE-uh) how I do love thee! You are one of the most fun events that take place in Baltimore all year, and you take place just feet from my door.
I do not have to get in car to reach you, ciclovia. In fact, I MUST not get in a car to reach you. Cars are not allowed on your streets, ciclovia. Feet, bikes, trikes, scooters, skates, unicycles, wagons only are allowed. No motorized vehicles of any sort for you, ciclovia. You are clean and green.
And this spring, ciclovia, you take place on a Saturday, NOT on a Sunday: Saturday, May 5, from noon to 4 p.m. What a civilized hour.
This year, Ciclovia 5, you also have a longer name: “Ciclovia 5, From Park to Park.” It makes sense, because you’re stretching yourself farther and covering more streets and more neighborhoods, and yes, more people in Baltimore than ever.
While you’ve included more than 1,000 Baltimoreans during each of your previous happenings on Roland Avenue, this time who knows how many people will discover you. You, Number 5, will go all the way from Roland Park through Wyman Park to Druid Hill Park. At last, you are spreading your wings.
You may be the most festive Baltimore ciclovia yet. So many people of all ages and neighborhoods will be out walking and biking and discovering your pleasures for the first time. They will undoubtedly be joined by so many who’ve already fallen in love with you. You are magnetic.
More food than ever you will provide, including three restaurant offerings at Tunes @ the Tower, just one event that will spring up along the way. The one at the Roland Water Tower, where Roland Avenue meets University Parkway, will provide tasty food from the Indian gourmet restaurant Verandah, South Carolina BBQ and Dirty Carrots Vegan Restaurant. Musicians will be on hand there too, to celebrate YOU, ciclovia.
Remember, ciclovia, when Roland Park and Keswick were at odds over the development of the Baltimore Country Club acreage? Not any more. You’ve brought them together again, as they’ve been since Keswick moved to Roland Park in 1926. Old friends are good friends.
You too are becoming an old friend, ciclovia. May you grow even more. Some ciclovias, like the one in Bogota, Columbia take place every week.
Hard to imagine how much fun that would be for 70 miles of roads to be closed each Sunday, with things like jugglers, free bikes, exercise and rumba classes along the way.
But this Saturday you are a good start. You are bigger than ever, ciclovia. Viva, “Ciclovia 5, From Park to Park!”