The end of a summer to remember for So Cal carvers
As summer came to a close over Labor Day weekend, carvers in Southern California played the day away in Long Beach, CA, at Saturday’s 2nd annual Labor Day Weekend Ride, or LDR, for short.
Among the 44 riders in attendance was Gildo Beleski, inventor of the Trikke — along with his family — and more than three dozen carvers who came to say goodbye to a So Cal summer that has seen an unprecedented 10 group rides in the region.
“I wanna trikke with more people,” said Beleski before the ride, eager to get underway. “I was the only one in the beginning, but it’s growing and it’s good to see.”
As a sign of that growth, the day marked the one-year anniversary of the first LDR, which was the first-ever organized group ride in Long
Beach. Last September, 20 riders participated in the inaugural event. This year’s count of 44 was one shy of the Southern California attendance record, set in May at the Last Saturday of the Month Ride, also in Long Beach.
To celebrate the occasion, the approximately 16-mile ride route included, for the first time, the recently-opened bikeways in downtown Long Beach. Normally dotted with passengers on two wheels, Saturday’s urban trek gave local citizens a chance to see a parade of people on three wheels — perhaps a sign of things to come for a town that calls itself the most bike (and bike-alternative) friendly city in America.
“I’m having a wonderful time,” said Elaine Scarver, who drove 90 miles from Lancaster to be at her first group ride (despite being a Trikke rider for all of three months).
Naturally, the ride route encompassed the scenic jewels along the Long Beach coastline, including Rainbow Lagoon, aka the Pond, the Lighthouse — with its fantastic views of the Queen Mary and the downtown skyline — the long and wide Long Beach bike path, and Naples Peninsula, where Robert Drake of Riverside won a new T7 Fitness Trikke, the grand prize of a day that featured many prizes.
After the ride, 32 hungry carvers feasted on food and drinks at Tequila Jacks in Shoreline Village, where a cake decorated with “LDR II” was served.
The ten group rides held in Southern California from Memorial Day weekend in May to Labor Day weekend — the traditional American summer — made it the busiest season ever for the sport of carving in the region. The end result: a So Cal carving community that is now more organized and cohesive, making it easier for carvers to connect with one another. It’s a sentiment perhaps best summed up at the LDR by Rich Goff of Azusa:
“It’s fantastic because I’m getting together with all these great people.”
The Labor Day Ride of Long Beach is co-hosted and co-sponsored by TrikkeWorld and SouthBay Trikke (official dealer of the magazine).
See photos from the 2011 Labor Day Ride by photographer Sean Tice of SouthBay Trikke.