THE PRESS ROOM - for immediate release

The Montréal Bike Fest has some tricks in store…

>> par Le Tour de l'Île de Montréal  Montréal, April 8, 2002 – Presented by the Fédération des producteurs de lait du Québec, in collaboration with RONA, the 2002 Bike Fest will be more vibrant than ever! From May 26 to June 2, the Tour de l’Île de Montréal organization will give avid cyclists and the general public an opportunity to take part in an exciting array of bicycle outings and other cycling-related activities, to celebrate the arrival of summer and the cycling season.

“The 2002 Bike Fest is all about renewal, so there will be lots of surprises,” announced Suzanne Lareau, Executive Director of the Tour de l’Île de Montréal, at the unveiling of this year’s Bike Fest schedule in Montréal today. “I think it’s safe to say that we’re going to surprise the participants.”

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A UNIQUELY FUNNY FEST
For the fourth consecutive year, the Montréal Bike Fest will include the Tour des Enfants, Un Tour la Nuit, B-Day and the Tour de l’Île. And this year’s Fest will also feature the comedy of the Just for Laughs team as well as a brand-new event — the Metropolitan Challenge, a 100- or 150-kilometre route through one of the areas bordering Montréal.

• The Tour des Enfants
The festivities will kick off on May 26 with the Tour des Enfants and its 8,000 young participants. This year, the favourite bicycle outing of 6- to 12 year olds will take them on a 22-kilometre ride through North of Montréal.

• B-Day
On Thursday, May 30, the entire population is encouraged to take part in B-day by using their bicycles to get to school, work, the grocery store, the park or wherever they want to go. And all cyclists who take time out to visit Parc Lafontaine are in for pleasant surprise. A day full of fresh air and fun — in other words, a day of cycling.

• Un Tour la Nuit
On Friday, May 31, Un Tour la Nuit will allow 5,500 night owls on bicycles festooned with lights to cycle 20 kilometres under the stars. After gathering beneath the illuminated façades of the buildings on Rue de la Commune in Old Montréal, the participants will take on the night as they cycle along the Lachine Canal, through Parc Angrignon, then beside the river on LaSalle Boulevard.

• The Metropolitan Challenge
On Saturday, June 1, a more vigorous outing awaits the 1,000 participants in the first annual Metropolitan Challenge. The Oka and Mirabel regions are little cycling paradises. The cyclists themselves will set the pace, choosing to complete a 100-kilometre route or to extend the fun, and the route, by pedaling all the way to Terrebonne — an impressive 150 kilometres.

• The Tour de l’Île
On Sunday, June 2, the Tour de l’Île intends to have a few good laughs. The 30,000 participants may or may not pedal hard enough to get a stitch in the side, but they will certainly split their sides laughing at the entertainment concocted by the Just for Laughs crew. To allow inexperienced cyclists and families to take part, we have shortened the route to 50 kilometres. But the Express version of the Tour will allow diehard cyclists to go further and faster. In fact, the speediest cyclists will have the option of amusing themselves by setting out all over again, pausing just long enough to enjoy the street entertainment the second time around.

It would be impossible to organize and oversee all these activities without the invaluable assistance of the 5,000 volunteers who help out with the Bike Fest every year.

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REGISTER TODAY!

To sign up for the various Bike Fest events, just:

• register on line at the Bike Fest website: www.velo.qc.ca (credit-card payments);

• call Info Tour Bell at (514) 521-TOUR (credit-card payments);

• complete the registration form in the Bike Fest program available at all RONA stores;

• or visit the Maison des Cyclistes at 1251 Rachel Street East in Montréal.

The Montréal Bike Fest is a creation of the Tour de l’Île de Montréal, a non-profit organization devoted to improving quality of life and creating a healthier environment by organizing cycling events and trips. The Tour de l’Île de Montréal is a member of Le Groupe vélo, which also comprises Vélo Québec and Les Éditions Tricycle.


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