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On Saturday, July 28, thousands of people walked, biked and otherwise visited Oakland’s Jack London Square for Pedalfest, a free celebration of bikes, food and family.

The bicycle antics were as diverse as Oakland itself: an amphibious bike race, bike stunt shows, scraper bikes rolling through the crowd, bike-powered live music and a kid’s bike parade. Visitors could ride quirky handmade bikes, try an electric bike or learn to ride a unicycle. In between, you had bike-related vendors, good food and beer from Drake’s Brewing Co.

Pedalfest was, and is, a great way for kids to get excited about bikes, which is important at a time when nearly one in five school-age children are obese.

Pedalfest also brought together diverse communities. The Scraper Bike Team has given Oakland’s inner community a positive, creative outlet for 12 years and counting. Their bike-decorating booth surely inspired other kids to have fun on two wheels.

Scraper Bike Team members got to mingle with kids on handmade bikes, kids from Oakland Composite Mountain Bike team, BMX riders and seasoned road riders.

One of Bike East Bay’s goals is to act as a bridge between Oakland’s diverse cycling communities, so it’s fitting that all proceeds from Drake’s Brewing went to the organization. Bike East Bay’s missionis to make cycling safe, fun and accessible for all. Its mission was well represented at Pedalfest.

Have you noticed the construction that’s still going on (but finishing) around Lake Merritt? The protected bike lanes evolved in part from the lobbying of Bike East Bay.

When completed, we’ll have protected bike lanes around Lakeside Drive and Harrison Street, with more to come. They’ll be separated by planted medians, protecting riders while beautifying the street.

Want to see more of the action at Pedalfest? Take a look at its photo and video gallery.

In Oakland and surrounding areas, we’re lucky to have bike-friendly weather almost year-round. Save a few dollars on gas and bike to your next movie outing, supermarket trip or to work or school.

Stay safe and ride smart. If you ever need us, we’re at 22ndand Broadway and only a phone call away. (510-893-3741)

Photo courtesy of Nancy McClure, Flickr