Calling All Cyclists: New Years Eve Bike Ride & Bash in Central Park
Brooklyn Riders Join “Times Up” New Year’s Eve Bike & Party at Belvedere Castle
December 19, 2011
By Ellen Freudenheim
Spend New Year’s Eve with other people who love what you love: Biking. Sustainable living. Green alternatives. Direct action.
Brooklyn cyclists can join with hundreds of others converging for a night ride through Manhattan and celebration on New Year’s Eve in Central Park. The NY Roadrunners have a permit for a fireworks display in Central Park, so participants in the ride can watch the fireworks show, too.
A Green Alternative to the Times Square Tradition (If You Wear Glitter, Make it Green Glitter)
This alternative New Years Eve event, called “TIME’S UP! New Years Eve Bike Ride,” has been going strong since about 2000.
The TIME’S UP! party is about a mile away from Times Square in distance. But it’s light years away in orientation.
After all, the volunteer organizers are folks who are experimenting with “energy bikes” to capture a little energy from peddling, and who run bike clinics (see below for locations in Brooklyn) to encourage cycling. They’ll do a group bike ride for just about any occasion: in honor of Valentine’s Day in February or to see the summer fireworks in Coney Island in August. They do a group bike ride in honor of Bob Marley’s birthday. They’ve organized something called the Bike Clown Brigade to highlight automobile drivers who are hostile to cyclists.
If heading into the New Year isn’t about the destination but rather the journey, then the TIME’S UP folks know precisely how they’ll be making that journey this January 1st: By bike.
Annual New Year’s Eve Bike Ride and BYO Cyclists Party at Belvedere Castle
New Year’s Eve event details for Brooklynites:
* Brooklyn cyclists who wish to join up should meet at around 10 P.M. at the Brooklyn-side entrance to the Williamsburg Bridge (in the park) to bike in a group up to Central Park’s Belvedere Castle for a chilly but festive outdoor New Year’s Eve celebration. It lasts about 45 minutes, and then everyone’s off to their next New Year’s Eve event.
* It’s a DIY party! Bring food and drink to share.
* Bring your noisemakers, New Year’s Eve hats and wear glitter. But it’s also January in New York – and the party is outside. So, dress accordingly!
* Cyclists are responsible for their own safety and compliance with NYC rules for nighttime cycling. (Bike lights and bells are not required by the group, but they are by law.)
* There is no admission fee.
About TIME’S UP!
The organizing entity, TIME’S UP!, is a volunteer-run, grassroots environmental group that since the 1990s has worked on issues such as helping create community gardens and advocating for New York City’s expansion of the urban bike lane network. Pursuing a green mission “to promote a more sustainable, less toxic city,” they’ve used various educational platforms and direct action to make New Yorkers more aware of how every day decisions about such basics as food and transportation have an impact on the environment.
Bike Clinics, Year Round: Where and When
Year round, the organization also runs bike clinics in Brooklyn.
* Bike clinics are held on Sunday, Monday and Wednesday: Sundays, 6-8 P.M.–Fix-Your-Own-Bike Open Workshop
* Mondays, 6:30-8:30 P.M.–Women & Trans Bike Repair Classes
* Wednesdays, 6:30-8:30 P.M.–Fix-Your-Own-Bike Open Workshop
* 99 South 6th Street in Williamsburg, off Bedford Avenue under the Williamsburg Bridge.