Traverse City Record-Eagle

Our Town

September 13, 2010

Harvest Tour: Scenic roads, tasty treats

Bicycle ride features beautiful roads, tasty treats

MAPLE CITY —— The Cherry Capital Cycling Club will host the 27th annual Leelanau Harvest Tour on Sunday, Sept. 19. More than 900 riders are expected for the scenic bicycle road ride through Leelanau County.

With route options that cover 25, 45, 67 or 100 miles of challenging hills, great views, good food and fun, there is something for every rider.

"For a lot of cyclists, this is the culmination of their riding season with a beautiful ride on some little-traveled roads through a beautiful region," said Pam Darling, outreach coordinator for Traverse Area Recreation and Transportation (TART) Trails Inc.

Routes are made up of paved roads with scenic terrain from flat to rolling hills, each with a few challenging power hills. While experienced riders will find a challenge on the longer routes, families and novice riders are encouraged to participate as well.

"This is a supported ride with cars traveling the routes to give support fixing bikes as well as moral support. It's a nice feeling to know that you are not out there on your own," Darling said.

The Leelanau Harvest Tour is known as much for the unique food stops along the route as it is for the ride itself.

"We offer a good variety of great food from local vendors," said Darling, noting that food stops are situated every 20 to 30 miles along the ride route.

"We have always received rave reviews for the food that is served," she said.

Refreshment stops, each located at a lakefront park, will feature Cherry Republic's Boomchunka cookies, locally made Naturally Nutty peanut butter, Food For Thought jams, bread from Pleasanton Brick Oven Bakery, vegetarian chili from Oryana, hearty soup from the Eatspot in Northport and pie from Sara Lee. Moomers ice cream will be served at the finish.

The event starts and ends at Glen Lake Schools, 3375 W. Burdickville Road. Cyclists may pre-register or register on the day of the event for $35 or $80 for families. Race-day check-in is from 7 to 10 a.m. Ride applications can be obtained from any Traverse City-area bike shop or the TART Trails office.

The tour benefits TART Trails and its ongoing trail-network expansion and improvements. For more information, call 941-4300 or visit www.leelanauharvesttour.org.

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