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Bikefest aims to connect, educate Ottawa cyclists

<p>Calling all two-wheel lovers: An annual festival held this Sunday will celebrate everything to do with bikes.</p>

An annual festival held this Sunday will celebrate everything to do with bikes.


Bikefest, hosted by Mountain Equipment Co-op, started last year as a three-hour event on the grounds of Immaculata High School. Hundreds of people attended.


Running from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., the second annual event has moved to a larger, more central location at LeBreton Flats just off the Ottawa River Parkway to accommodate more people.
Organizations, including MEC, Re-Cycles and Tommy & Lefebvre will be offering free bike tune-ups on site.


“This is a great opportunity to have bike maintenance done or learn how to do a tune-up,” said festival coordinator Nicki Mosley.


Attendees will also get a chance to watch a bike mechanic build a bike from scratch.


There will also be safe cycling workshops, focusing on road safety and safety gear and a workshop on better biking techniques, which will focus on technical skills for mountain bike riders.


Two wheels are too many? There will also be a learn-to-ride unicycle workshop in the morning and a unicycle trials competition starting at 1 p.m., with local and out-of-town competitors.
The event also includes to a bike-gear swap for used goods and bikes and a kids’ zone.


Groups attending include Pathway Patrol, Envirocentre, the Ottawa Riverkeeper, CPAWS, the Ottawa Mountain Bike Association, the International Mountain Bicycling Association and Bicycles for Humanity, which is collecting donations of mountain and hybrid bikes for shipment to Malawi.


“The world of urban biking is expanding and commuting by bicycle is becoming more popular for people as environmental consciousness elevates,” said Mosley. “This area has both recreational riders and competitive riders. With Gatineau Park so close and the bike path so accessible, this is a fantastic city for cycling.”

 
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