Co-founders Hassan Abdus-Sabur and Paul Chinnery, and creative strategy pro Delanie West, are the visionaries behind the event. The trio collaborated to organize the ride and attract a broad cross-section of local sponsors and community partners to make the event possible.
As it did in November, the ride will again feature a tour of historical and significant sites in Newark. While the fall Renaissance Ride route emphasized stops throughout downtown Newark, this ride will feature a South Ward-focused route, taking participants through Weequahic Park, down Bergen Street, and to Clinton Avenue for a stop at the Amphitheater. (Eagle-eyed residents and visitors might have noticed the attractive Newark Renaissance Ride banners that currently grace major South Ward thoroughfares.)
The ride will culminate at Newark Public Library for an “After Social” event, which will feature live music and a curated history of architecture and cycling culture.
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Chinnery, who is also an accomplished photographer, said the organizers “are seeking to dismantle long-standing, negative stereotypes regarding Newark and its residents” via the ride experience. Abdus-Sabur added that Newark is “the perfect city” for the Renaissance Ride concept. “It is literally transforming right before our eyes, so we feel that now is the perfect point in time to merge the past with the present and create a social, sartorial, and a historical experience like no other,” he said.
Speaking of the sartorial, fashion will be an important pillar of the Renaissance Ride experience. Participants are encouraged to get decked out in seersucker and linen finery, and awards will be given to the best-dressed woman and man during the post-ride event at the library. West, who headed up the creative and marketing for the ride and is a semi-competitive triathlete, noted that participants needn’t possess anything near her level of athleticism to participate. “You just have to be stylishly outfitted and remember your biking skills from when you were a kid,” she offered. The low-intensity ride is about 10 miles long and estimated to take 2 hours, including stops.
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In addition to showing off more of the best of Newark, the event also aims to celebrate and advocate for cycling culture. Tickets, and bike rentals for those who don’t have one, are still available on the ride’s website as of this publishing.