Blazer fans ready to roll to Rose Garden
FANS READY TO ROLL TO THE ROSE GARDEN FOR ANNUAL BIKE TO BLAZERS GAME
Third-annual event will pay homage to Bill Walton’s route across the Steel Bridge
PORTLAND, Ore. — The Trail Blazers enjoy a connection to Portland’s bike community that spans as far back as Bill Walton, perhaps the most celebrated bike enthusiast in team history.
On Wednesday, fans can be part of this Portland tradition at the third annual Bike-to-Blazers game against Golden State, riding to the game over the Steel Bridge as Walton himself often did.
Cyclists – including Portland Mayor Sam Adams, Metro councilor Rex Burkholder and Bike Portland editor Jonathan Maus, the founder of the event – will meet for a rally at the Salmon Street Fountain at McCall Waterfront Park at 5:30 p.m.
“Thousands of cyclists commute by the Rose Quarter each day,” Portland Trail Blazers President Larry Miller said. “Bike to Blazers encourages active transportation and creates a fun event for Trail Blazers fans and cyclists. Our hope is that people see biking to games as a fun, healthy alternative to driving.”
The event is in partnership with the Bicycle Transportation Alliance, BikePortland.org, Lloyd TMA, Portland Water Bureau, Metro, Community Cycling Center, Portland Bicycle Tours, and the Office of Mayor Sam Adams.
“Trail Blazers basketball and bicycling are two great Portland pastimes. I’m excited to see these two pastimes come together to create an exceptional event that will hopefully become a Portland tradition,” Mayor Adams said.
Highlights of the event will include:
* A free prize raffle for an autographed Bill Walton helmet * A “dress like Bill Walton” contest * Community bike awareness events on the Rose Quarter Commons * A designated bike section for the first 100 ticket buyers, with JumboTron recognition. * Post game free-throw shooting for participants * Trail Blazers bike bells for cyclists
“Biking to Trail Blazers games is not only a fun way to get to the Rose Garden, it’s a way to enhance public health and create more livable, vibrant communities,” said Stephanie Noll of the Bicycle Transportation Alliance (BTA).
The Trail Blazers are encouraging Portlanders to participate—even if they’re not daily bike commuters. Portland Bicycle Tours is loaning bikes to fans that want to join in the festivities, but are without a bike of their own. Those who cannot make the rally are still encouraged to bike to the game, using route planning assistance from the City of Portland and Tri-Met. Limited covered bike parking is now available at the Rose Garden.
The Bike to Blazers event follows a successful NBA Green Week partnership with the NBA and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), during which the Trail Blazers hosted the U.S. Green Building Council and NBA leadership to officially celebrate the Rose Garden’s LEED Gold certification, an accomplishment made possible in part because of the team’s commitment to sustainable transportation efforts.
“Being green is part of Portlanders’ DNA,” Miller said. “We want to make it easier for fans to reduce their environmental footprint with a full range of transportation options.”
Miller added that bike-friendly development will play an important role in creating a more green, active and enlivened Rose Quarter.
“New amenities for cyclists and active transportation options for visitors have been at the center of our development conversations,” Miller said. “We want to make biking to the Rose Quarter a convenience, because we recognize the benefits to the environment, to public health and to adjacent neighborhoods.”
Special thanks to BikePortland.org for helping make this year’s ride the biggest yet.