Valley route update: Bedford to the Legislature

From Bev Reid, Velo Halifax Bicycle Club

I was proud and excited to represent the Velo Halifax Bicycle Club on this short
16K leg. My team consisted of my Husband Joe, a long-time cyclist and Jamie
Benoit, a year-round commuter cyclist.

We wanted a longer ride than 16K so Joe and I decided to bike from our home in
Cole Harbour which would give us a nice 60K loop. We travelled on Montague
Road to the Waverley Road and then along the lakes to Rocky Lake Road and into

We met Jamie at Bicycles Plus and picked up the Baton. As we had a lot of time to
spare for a 16K ride, we did as many cyclists do and had a pleasant hour at Tim
Hortons talking about cycling.

Leaving Bedford around 11am, we took the Bedford Highway into Halifax. The
Windsor Street Interchange was busy as usual but we got through it safely. We
cycled onto Windsor Street, turned left on Almon Street, right on Agricola Street,
left on Rannie Drive and down Duke Street to Lower Water Street where we spent
more time at another Tim Hortons on the waterfront. At 12:30 it was time to join
the other cyclists. We went up Prince Street and turned right on Granville Street
as directed. Many cyclists had arrived already and there were some I knew.

It was exciting to watch as the relay ended with the cyclists arriving from all four
directions to the Nova Scotia Legislature. Imagine, the baton I held in my hand
had started in Yarmouth, through the Valley and Windsor and into Bedford. All
batons made it to the same destination safely. We were various ages and
strengths but all dedicated to the same purpose – safer cycling!

When my name was called, I proudly walked up to make the last pass of the
baton. I gladly received the certificate on behalf of all the cyclists who took part in
the relay from Yarmouth to Halifax.

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Cape Breton and Highlands Relay Update: Barney’s River to New Glasgow to Pictou

From: Mark Henderson

I had the pleasure of joining in on two of the road rides for Bill 93, I attended the ride from Barney’s River to New Glasgow and from New Glasgow to Pictou. The ride from Barney’s River made the 6 o’clock news on Monday May 23. I was seen signing the paper while Clint held it. On the ride from New Glasgow to Pictou we had our picture taken for the Pictou Advocate.

Both groups were of similar size with 12-14 riders each.  It was a real pleasure to ride to support the bill. My fellow cyclists made the ride really enjoyable, there was good conversation and I believe more friends were made.

I am glad Nova Scotia is passing this bill. It will make the riding experience better for both vehicles and bicycles. I am also glad they are including bike lanes in the new repaving projects – soon Nova Scotia will make a great tourist destination for people who enjoy biking.

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Annapolis Valley Relay Update: Windsor to Bedford

From: Bob White, President of NS Ramblers Bicycle Club

A dozen Ramblers had a terrific bike ride from Windsor to Bedford (56k
one way); 6 pedaled both ways and one pedaled from Purcell’s Cove
return. There was a strong headwind to Windsor and a wonderful
tailwind pushing us back to Bedford.

The Bill 93 baton, as well as several signs for our backs announcing
the “rally” are now at Bicycles Plus awaiting Bev Reid and Velo
Halifax to bike it in tomorrow.

We had a lovely second breakfast at TAN Cafe In Windsor. Prior to the
start of the ride the RCMP greeted us at the Cafe and we gave
a detailed account of the ride to a reporter of the local newspaper,
pre-arranged by one of our members. Every 5km or so, we passed the
baton to a fresh bicyclist so everyone had a chance to partake in this
important occasion.

After a flat tire (fixed in under 5 minutes), we arrived in Bedford where we took
lots of pictures, dropped off the baton and headed to the Chicken
Burger for a delicious lunch.

It was a great ride, great day, great purpose and wonderful
fellowship. This is a great time to be a bicyclist in NS! On behalf of
all the members of the Ramblers, I would like to express our profound
thanks for allowing us to be part of this wonderful event!

Photos Credited to Grant Bristow

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South Shore Relay Update: Peggy’s Cove

From: Dawn Stegan and associates at Nova Scotia
Department of Health and Wellness

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Northern NS Relay Update: Truro to Fall River

From: Darren Noble

Bill 93 Relay – Shubenacadie to Fall River – May 29, 2011

Here’s a math problem for you: If 3 cyclists are travelling south with a 40 km headwind, and 3 cyclists are travelling north with a 40 km tail wind, will they meet at the time and place planned?

Bruce and Daisy Roberts, along with Chris Adams, set out from Truro today at noon with the Bill 93 relay baton to meet with Brent Noble, Robin Lattie and Darren Noble who would carry the baton on to Fall River. Needless to say, the meeting time was off and the latter group had some waiting to do in Milford. After 30 minutes passed and still no sign, we ventured further north along Highway 2 in search of the Truro riders. In Shubenacadie, we found them, still in good spirits after almost 2 hours of relentless wind. We rode back to the original meeting place in Milford to update the game plan.

We would all ride as a group to Enfield, where Bruce, Daisy and Chris would turn back for Truro and Brent, Rob and I would carry on to Fall River. Brent noticed my interest in this endeavour on such a windy day starting to wane, and with his youthful energy of 15 years and his “git ‘er dun” attitude, he decreed the baton would be in Fall River before sundown. During this side of the road chat, Bob Williams, out for a ride on this fine afternoon, stopped in. Having only met Bob in passing, but knowing Daisy and Bruce hold in him in highest respect, his parting words as he left us were (as he headed for Truro) “RIDE NORTH!”

We left Milford, tacking west in the wind along Highway 14 to Nine Mile River to give Bruce, Daisy and Chris a break. Once there, they had had enough and looked forward to wind on their backs as they headed for home. We signed off the baton, took pictures, and then there were only 3.

“Ride North” became my silent mantra as we hit the Old Enfield Road to get back on Highway 2 again. I knew when we reached Fall River; we’d turn 180 degrees, and do just that. With Brent off in the lead and Rob and I trading pulls every few minutes, we progressed to Laurie park where Rob (regretfully) called for a ride and turned back due to a family commitment in the evening. And then there were 2.

I received a call from John Newgard to say he would be at Tim’s in Fall River in 40 minutes. John, having just raced the Halifax crit, (and crashed) would “run” out to meet us and receive the baton. “Just look for the guy with the bandages” he said. His tailwind, our headwind, I figured we’d land there at the same time.

After a brief chat with John and a photo, the baton safely tucked in his jersey pocket, and farewells, he was off to Halifax. Brent and I took on a little sustenance at the aforementioned Tim’s.

Finally, Ride North! What a great ride back to Elmsdale. Looking back on the day, it didn’t really seem like we were carrying history in our jersey pockets, but I now realize we were, and very happy to have had the opportunity. Many thanks to the organizers of the Bill 93 baton relay.

Good riding, safe roads.

From: John Newgard

After the conclusion of several exciting bike races that comprised the Bicycle Plus Halifax Criterium, Cory Stockwell and I got back on our bikes and headed out to Fall River to receive the Bill 93 baton.  The baton had headed south earlier in the day, into ferocious headwinds, shepherded first by the Hub Cycle crew, then by Darren noble and his son Brent.  Cory and I had both sustained minor injuries from crashing in our respective races.  Cory’s crash came mid-way through his race and he was able to jump back in and even capture a second place finish.  I, on the other hand, crashed 250 m before the finish, and so I all captured was a case of scraped skin and a wounded ego.  Nevertheless, the Bill must go on!

Halfway from Halifax to Fall River, the pain from Cory’s knee injury forced him to turn back.  I carried on and met Darren and Brent in Fall River at a well-known Canadian landmark: Tim Horton’s.  We chatted briefly about how great my tailwind was and how they had had to battle the headwind, then we posed for a photo op and went our separate ways.

The baton will be heading from Bicycles Plus, through Dartmouth, across the MacDonald Bridge, and through the streets of Halifax tomorrow, to arrive at the Legislature at 12:45.

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Annapolis Valley Relay Update: Wolfville to Windsor

From: Gary Bustin

Relay team: Gary Bustin (leg leader), Terri Aker, Mark Schofield, Theresa Myra

Beautiful bright sunny skies and warm winds scented with apple blossoms and lilacs set the scene that would repeat itself mile after mile, pedal after pedal, from Wolfville to Windsor on Sunday, May 29.

Our journey with “Bill”, all snuggled in Gary’s jersey pocket, began on the downtown waterfront in Wolfville with Mayor Bob Stead graciously taking his personal time with great enthusiasm and interest to see us off.

The relay continued through Wolfville then diverted off the beaten track through scenic, rolling country roads with gentle tailwinds giving us a sweet “Lance Armstrong edge” as we cycled “Bill” through the communities of Valley communities of Melanson, Wallbrook, Avonport, Hantsport, Falmouth and Windsor. A journey that couldn’t resist stops along the way to embrace a lazy, warm Sunday fishing expedition on the banks of the Gaspereau River, and a chat with local folks as they bustled around local sidewalk cafes and eateries.

“Bill’s” arrival in Windsor was grand and so was the sunburn on some folks who never thought sun screen would be necessary after being sunless for almost a month.      Abstinence, apparently, does not make us immune. A tasteful and absolutely “delish” lunch (with fries!) was enjoyed at the Spitfire while “Bill” and his happy bikers took center stage inside the pub.

“Bill” bedded down for the night at the quaint little cozy T.A.N Café in downtown Windsor. As exciting as it was for us to see “Bill” arrive safely and in a timely fashion we all felt a bit lonesome without his presence as we cycled back to Wolfville.

With bellies full, the warmth of sunburn skin on “some of us”, the not-so-gentle wind in our faces, although still very sweetly scented with blossoms, we concluded the most perfect day celebrating and cycling the spirit of the Bill 93 on its final valley leg…

This was the end of our journey with Bill 93 but we will ride in it’s spirit forever)

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Annapolis Valley Relay Update: Kentville to Wolfville

From: Gary Bustin

The weather forecast for Friday, May 27th, wasn’t the best, but the day turned out beautiful in the Annapolis Valley with lots of sun and temperatures in the high 20s. Five cyclists met in Kentville at 6:30 pm to escort the Bill 93 Baton to Wolfville. The relay team consisted of Gary Bustin, Janet Woodworth, and Sandy Mackinnon, all seasoned riders from Centennial Cycling Club (CCC) plus local cyclists Brenda and Bruce Hurwood. Brenda and Bruce were apparently so inspired by Gary, Janet and Sandy that they joined “CCC” following the Relay and have made plans to join us in our upcoming “Tour of the Vineyards” ride on June 4th.

The relay began with a bit of a climb up Belcher Street, but from there it was clear sailing. Belcher Street, with new pavement, has a gradual downhill from the lights on Middle Dyke Road to Port Williams with nice tailwinds. What more could cyclists ask for? We arrived at the Tim Horton’s parking lot for a ceremonial handover of the baton from Gary Bustin to himself, as Gary will lead the relay leg from Wolfville to Windsor on Sunday, June 29th.

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