Detroit — With the crispness of fresh early fall air at their backs, 150 bicyclists from across Metro Detroit got the rare opportunity Sunday to pedal across the Ambassador as part of the annual Bike the Bridge tour.
“It was a great view from up there,” said a smiling Cathy Perrin, a 58-year-old Ann Arbor resident who took part in the tour, which carried riders through 10 miles of southwest Detroit neighborhoods and thoroughfares.
“The weather was perfect.”
Perrin, who has participated in 11 triathlons, rode with her husband, Steve. It was her first bike tour in the city, but Perrin vowed it would not be her last.
“There are a lot of beautiful areas,” said Perrin, who grew up in Detroit.
Bikers of all ages rode through the neighborhoods near Vernor, Fort Street and others bordering the bridge.
The tour was sponsored by Tour de Troit, a nonprofit organization that uses public events to promote bicycling, bike safety and running.
Bicyclists paid $65 to enter. Some of the proceeds are used for the upkeep of bike paths in Detroit.
Father and son duo Dave and Adam Kanski have done Bike the Bridge before and participated in the Tour de Troit ride for the past three years.
That event, which attracted 6,000 cyclists, was held last month.
Dave Kanski, 59, a retired GM skilled trades employee, said the ride over the Ambassador Bridge was a wonderful opportunity to see both Canada and the United States from above.
“The view goes on forever,” said Kanski, a Chesterfield Township resident.
Dave Kanski said he and his son took extra time to enjoy many of Detroit’s vistas.
“We really had a great time,” he said.
“It’s really amazing to see the city and meet different people. It’s amazing to see how much the city is changing and to see all of the pockets ... the cafes.”
Adam Kanski, 36, who works in information technology for Ford Motor Co., said the ride on the bridge was picturesque.
“The views are breathtaking,” he said.
Dave Kanski added that he was struck by how much of a “biking city” Detroit has become.
Cyclists like Aiesha Morris, 34, of Detroit got the chance to do something she has often dreamed about.
“I always wanted to ride across the Ambassador Bridge,” said Morris, who works for the state of Michigan. “It was awesome.”
Morris rode Sunday with her brother, Dominic Johnson. She said she loves riding and feeling “the wind against my skin.”
Morris said the race brings people to the city who otherwise might not have visited.
“I think it does a lot for the city,” said Morris. “They feel safe and you’re in a group of like-minded people.”