On Wednesday, May 20, 2015 beginning at 7:00 pm, Medford’s Freedom Park will be host to the local starting and ending point for the 12th anniversary of the National Ride of Silence. On this day cyclists worldwide will take to the roads in a slow, silent procession to honor bicyclists who have been killed or injured while cycling on public roads. The Ride of Silence also is intended to bring attention to bicycle safety as well highlighting cyclists’ legal right to “Share the Road” with motorists.
This is the 12th year of the National Ride of Silence and the third year that the Medford Chapter will ride. The Ride of Silence is a Free ride that has its cyclists bike no faster than 12 mph and remain silent during the ride. Families, couples, friends and neighbors are encouraged to come out and show their support. mile ride under their own power. In 2003, Chris Phelan organized the first Ride of Silence in Dallas after endurance cyclist Larry Schwartz was hit by the mirror of a passing bus and was killed. Since then the ride has grown into a worldwide event staged the same week in May.
The Medford event will start at 7pm at Freedom Park (86 Union Street). Participants are asked to arrive 30 minutes early to allow for parking and registration. Participants must also have bicycle that is safe and operable, wear a helmet, and be able to make the ride 12mph/8 mile ride under their own power. Riders should be back to Freedom Park by dusk (approx. 8:30 pm)
In 2012 the first Ride of Silence was conducted by the Medford chapter. Members of all major local bicycling clubs are participating. This year we are expecting over one hundred cyclists. The ride will follow a pre-determined route through Medford (www.rideofsilence.org, click NJ, click Medford). Ride of Silence 2014 route
“Unfortunately, there are far too many people who have lost a loved-one or friends in a tragic auto/bike accident,” said Medford Chiropractor Dr. Brett A. Wartenberg. After suffering a near fatal accident myself in 2006, I want to create as much awareness as possible about road and
Bicycle safety". According to New Jersey State Police (www.njsp.org), there have been 146 fatal
Bicycle-automobile injuries in NJ from 2002 -2011. "There are many, many more that are seriously injured, but I couldn't find statistics in NJ. For example in Michigan in one year (2007) there were 2,188 reported accidents between automobiles and bicycles. The largest percentage of fatalities occurred in two demographics,
- Children 11-15 yrs. of age (23.5%)
- Adults 45-54 yrs. of age (41.2%)
Many drivers are not aware that bicycles are legally required to ride in the streets and roads and not on sidewalks" Wartenberg concluded.
A brief ceremony remembering family and loved-ones who lost their lives while riding their bicycle will be held, followed by ride protocol and safety instructions.
This event is sponsored by Medford Township, NJ and the Rock-it-Riders Bicycle Club and is supported by the Medford Police Department. The Medford Police will be stopping traffic along the route so the ride will be safe and clear. Bicycle Mechanics will be on hand to check bikes. Industry related and safety vendors will be on hand as well.
For more information and to register go to Medford Ride of Silence Facebook page.
National Ride of Silence page: http://www.rideofsilence.org/main.php
For more information please visit http://www.medfordtownship.com/recreation.php
Rock-it-Rider Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/RockItRiders?fref=ts
For additional information please contact: Beth Portocalis, Township of Medford 17 North Main Street Medford, NJ 08055-2411,
PHONE: (609) 654-2608 x338