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Tykes on Bikes

Long Island City hosts a bike parade.

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The Hungry March Band  

Wrangling small children and their bicycles out to Queens is no easy feat, but Long Island City’s first bike parade is worth the super-parent effort and logistics. On May 10, arrive early at the Socrates Sculpture Park to register (it’s free) and take part in bike-safety and repair workshops. Parade partners include Bike New York, Recycle-a-Bicycle, and Transportation Alternatives. Although riding in the parade is an obvious choice to be the highlight of the day, the pre-ride bike decorating might steal its thunder. Sculpture Park artists will help kids create tassels, flags, mock baskets, and spoke decorations. “We’re working with all repurposed recycled materials—fabric, paper, straws, beautiful fake flowers, ribbons, and streamers,” says Katherine Novick, the Sculpture Park’s education-program manager. All decorations—including a “stop-motion thing on the wheels”—have been considered for safety. “They can still ride.” The festooned two- (or three- or four-with-training-) wheelers will take a route just about a mile, up Vernon Boulevard from the Sculpture Park to Queensbridge Park. The Hungry March Band and performers from Circus Amok will help set the mood for an anticipated 1,200 riders. The Sculpture Park has even negotiated to have its neighbor Costco close its driveway for a while so the bikes can pass. “It’s otherwise kind of a crazy street,” says Novick. Volunteers will dot the route offering water and comfort. No kids are too young or old—wee ones can go on the backs of their parents’ rides. The wheels on the bikes will go round and round, rain or shine.

5/10, registration 11:30 a.m., workshops and decorating noon to 3 p.m., parade 3 p.m. 32-01 Vernon Blvd., nr. Broadway, Long Island City (718-956-1819 or socratessculpturepark.org); free.


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