Sunday, February 11, 2007
The Tour de Palm Springs 1
The "Tour de Palm Springs" is a goodnatured annual charity event where anyone can ride with fellow cycling enthusiasts around the Coachella Valley in either 100-mile, 55-mile, 25-mile, 10-mile or 5-mile routes.
Lesley Swanson, above, had just bought a new bicycle and though we had barely met the evening before, we somehow agreed to reconnoiter on Saturday morning and see about crashing the public cycling party.
The serious 100-mile people had left at an ungodly hour of the morning, while the 5 and 10 mile riders were partitioned out the starting gate at around 9:30 in the morning from the corner of Palm Canyon and Ramon.
For our entertainment pleasure, the Palm Springs High School Band serenaded the cyclists while a group of cheerleaders urged the crowd on to great athletic feats.
Not being official riders anyway, Lesley and I sneaked through a Washington Mutual parking lot and joined the 10-mile group a block away from the starting line. They mostly consisted of families having a great time.
There were pit stops along the way that not only provided water, bathrooms, and food...
...but there were good live bands at each location.
At one watering station in the parking lot of a Del Taco franchise...
...water and M&M's were being distributed by an archetypal Palm Springs Volunteer, above.
Again, there was a great little rock band...
...that was being fronted by a little boy and a large palm frond...
...which he used as a prop while dancing around doing major air guitar.