El Tour de Tucson
Arizona's longest-running bicycle event circles Tucson on Saturday before Thanksgiving, November 23, 2019
El Tour de Tucson
November 23, 2019
El Tour de Tucson presented by Casino Del Sol is a homegrown Tucson perimeter ride that holds the title "Arizona's largest and longest running bicycle event." El Tour has several different events so there's something for all abilities and ages.
In 2018, riders chose from 100-, 75-, 50-, or 25-mile routes and a Fun Ride of 10-, 4-, 1- and 1-1/4-mile distances. The Indoor El Tour offers stationary bike riders the opportunity to tally minutes, not miles. Either way, you're bound to have fun when you join the next El Tour on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2019.
Check out the Perimeter Bicycling Association of America (PBAA) website.
The 100-mile start line (and finish line for all events) is located at Armory Park, west of Children’s Museum Tucson on South 6th Avenue at 13th Street, in downtown Tucson. At the finish line, participants and spectators are invited to stay for the next event -- El Tour Downtown Fiesta!
The "El Tour season" kicks off in September at Loop the Loop, a free bicycling event routed along The Loop, Tucson's car-free, multi-use urban path. Other El Tour season activities include training classes and practice rides, bike patrol certification classes, a two-day El Tour Expo, orientation meetings, a dedication dinner, and the Indoor El Tour. See the current El Tour schedule of events. If you're unsure which ride is best for you or another rider, contact Perimeter Bicycling Association of America (PBAA) and talk with a staff member.
El Tour was established in 1983 with the goal of becoming the nation's largest charity-fundraising bicycling event. Founder Richard DeBernardis set out to prove that a bicycle event could generate as much money as any fundraiser while educating the participants and the community about healthful benefits of cycling. El Tour has grown from a 198-participant bicycling event that raised $5,500 for the American Diabetes Association in 1983, to a two-month series of activities that attracts up to 9,000 cyclists who raised nearly $13 million for charities in 2016.
Bicycling Accolades for Tucson
El Tour's prominence has contributed to metro Tucson's consistent rankings as one the country's top bicycle-friendly communities. Here are a few more recent accolades:
•#5 of 10 cities ranked overall in America’s Best Places for Bikes, PlacesForBikes Rating System, May 2018.
#23 of 50 best bike cities – Bicycling Magazine, September 2016
•#9 of most bikeable cities in USA - Walk Score, May 2015
•Top 10 cycling cities in U.S. – TravelChannel.com, May 2015
•#7 of most bike-friendly cities – BetterDoctor.com, March 2015
•#18 of top 50 bike-friendly cities – Bicycling.com, August 2014
•#7 of 10 best U.S. cycling town – 10best.com/USA Today, July 2014
•#7 of best cities in the USA for people who love to ride – Bustle.com, June 2014
•#1 of top-10 best bike towns” – Outside Magazine, May 2012
•“Tucson best road-biking city in the country” – Outside Magazine, August 2010
•“The Best in Cycling in November - Ride with 9,000 friends, El Tour de Tucson” - Bicycling Magazine, November 2010
The Tucson area's excellent bike-lane system, which includes more than 700 miles of paved bikeways, including bike lanes and residential bike routes as well as The Loop, metro Tucson's network of shared-use paths, makes it possible to travel practically anywhere in the city by bike.
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