Colonial Fondo Features Pro Rider Ted King Leading Scenic Bike Ride
Colonial Williamsburg hosts a recreational bike ride this fall when the Colonial Fondo comes to town. Cannondale-Garmin professional rider Ted King leads the September 26 ride, which begins at 7 a.m. and follows a course of either 50 or 70 miles through America’s oldest counties, finishing on the Colonial Parkway along the James River about 11 a.m.
Inspired by popular Gran Fondo rides created in Europe in the 1970s, the event is not a race and is not timed. It is part of a bicycle-themed weekend that includes a hotel package with rooms available at the bike-friendly Williamsburg Woodlands Hotel and Suites and a Friday night party, “Beer, Bikes and BBQ” at Chowning’s Tavern, with live music and open exclusively to ride registrants.
The Colonial Fondo takes place during the week Richmond hosts the 2015 UCI Road World Championships, with bike races expected to bring thousands of professional riders and their followers from all around the world to the area Sept. 19-27. Race enthusiasts who participate in the Colonial Fondo can avoid the crowds and take a scenic drive via Route 5 to Richmond to see the competition with women’s elite riders Saturday afternoon and the men’s elite riders Sunday morning. Hardy cyclists can also take the Virginia Capital Trail bike path that connects Williamsburg to Richmond and is scheduled for completion by September.
Friday afternoon at 4:45 and 6:30 p.m., the Kimball Theatre presents the classic bicycling film, “Breaking Away,” (1979) starring Dennis Christopher, Dennis Quaid and Daniel Stern. Saturday afternoon at 12 and 4 p.m., the Kimball will show “American Flyers” (1985) starring Kevin Costner and at 2:15 and 6:15 p.m. the Italian classic “The Bicycle Thief” (1948). The cost of the fondo is $95 for riders who register prior to July 31 and includes the bike ride, swag, free parking and admission to “Beer, Bikes and BBQ.” The hotel package starts at $150 per rider per night and includes ride registration, lodging, swag, “Beer, Bikes and BBQ,” free parking, breakfast, admission to the film series and a daily Colonial Williamsburg admission ticket.
The City of Williamsburg is showing its support for bicycling with a traveling exhibit of outdoor sculptures called “Las Bicicletas,” a series of 40 brightly colored abstract steel sculptures of bicycles by Mexican artist Gilberto Aceves Navarro placed at various landmarks around the city through October.
Route segments, registration and information are available at www.colonialwilliamsburg.com/fondo. Enthusiasts are invited to join the conversation about the fondo on social media using the hashtag #colonialfondo. Information is also available at 855-296-6627.