Ride of Silence Returns on May 17

Cyclists return on Duval Mine and Abrego Roads. (Photo by Tom and Monica Parker)

The 18th observation of the international Ride of Silence comes to the Green Valley/Sahuarita area on Wednesday, May 17. Cyclists will take to the roads across the country and in many international locations in a silent procession to honor cyclists who have been killed or injured while cycling on public roadways. The ride, which is held during National Bike Month, aims to raise the awareness of motorists that cyclists have a legal right to the public roadways and that both need to “share the road.” The ride is also a chance to show respect for and honor the lives of those who have been killed or injured.

The vulnerability of cyclists was recently proven in nearby Goodyear when a pick-up driver killed two cyclists and left many others seriously injured. In our local area, agencies have cooperated over the years to make roadway improvements for cyclists, golf cart users, and pedestrians. You can help to increase your cycling safety by using these tips from the GVR Cycling Club:

Use front and rear lights day and night.

Be predictable—signal and ride with intent.

No earbuds/headphones.

Use mirrors.

Be visible—bright clothing.

Pay attention to your surroundings.

Follow the rules of the road.

And, of course, wear a helmet.

Anybody can “ride” a bike. But can you “drive” your bike? Driving your bike is needed when riding on roads and coexisting with motorized vehicular traffic. Need help on how to “drive” your bike? Pima County offers free classes where you will gain a full understanding of how to safely operate a bicycle in a variety of situations.

On May 17 local cyclists will observe the Ride of Silence, leaving from the GVR East Social Center at 6 p.m., and slowly follow a 7 mile route. The Green Valley Fire District, the Pima County Sheriff Department, and Sheriff Auxiliary Volunteers will team up to provide a safe escort for all riders. Participants are asked to assemble, beginning at 5:30 p.m., and enjoy light refreshments provided by the Santa Cruz Valley Bicycle Advocate Committee.

For an interesting video of the 2022 local Ride of Silence prepared by local cyclists Tom and Monica Parker, please go to www.youtube.com/watch?v=LDNluhLi8_c.