CicLAvia Rolled Along Smoothly Oct. 9, 2011

mom jogging with baby in stroller

During CicLAvia, the streets become an exercise track for jogging with a baby.

Discover LA by Metro:

A Great Day for a Sunday Stroll – and Roll

At some major intersections, cars are allowed to cross the ten mile CicLAvia route.

man riding unicycle

All forms of transport can be seen along the CicLAvia route.

It was a typical picture-perfect LA day. And a ten mile stretch of streets going through Downtown was packed – with cheerful Angelenos, all out of their cars enjoying the city on foot or wheels. The mood was festive and the weather couldn’t have been better for the more than 130,000 participants in Los Angeles’ third CicLAvia event.

The CicLAvia route was very Metro accessible. In the spring, we started from MacArthur Park, hopped on the Metro to 7th/Metro Center, then to City Hall, and then walked to Little Tokyo.

This time, with an early start, we planned on entering the route west of MacArthur Park and ending at the African American Firefighter Museum on the new southern spur of the route. It was a well-intentioned, ambitious plan to see new-to-us neighborhoods.

A parade of bikes greets those out for a Sunday stroll along 6th Street during CicLAvia.

We strolled from the Vermont/Wilshire Red/Purple Line Metro station up to 4th and Vermont, where we joined the CicLAvia route along 4th and 6th Streets, and on to MacArthur Park. People were definitely enjoying themselves, many lining the route waving to those passing by. Everyone seemed to appreciate the absence of cars. The whole route took on a park-like feel (we’re thinking LA transformed into Central Park) with people smiling, sunning, and laughing in the middle of city streets.

The CicLAvia route was very well organized. It was clearly marked and patrolled by police on foot and bikes. The hubs or rest stops along the way supplied water, entertainment, first aid, and bike repair. Food was available for purchase at the hubs and from neighborhood merchants along the route. We are really appreciative of all the behind-the-scenes work it must take to make this event roll so smoothly.

Looking like living art, CicLAvia participants seated in front of the garden fence of a mural enjoy food truck offerings near MacArthur Park.

There was a good variety of food trucks and local vendors at MacArthur Park. We had planned to have lunch at Langers, an LA landmark, hoping that they would open for the CicLAvia, but they didn’t. Instead, we gave in to “Don Draper” ice cream (vanilla, bourbon, smoke, and caramel) from the Lake Street Creamery truck — rich, but we couldn’t taste the bourbon — and listened to the musicians in the park. Could there be a lovelier way to spend a Sunday?

Refreshed, we headed back on the Metro to Civic Center station and City Hall. Here we were interested to learn about Occupy LA.

family with bikes entering Metro station.

Using the Metro makes CicLAvia easy to access.

Leaving City Hall after 2 p.m., we headed for Pershing Square, intending to stroll down Spring Street, then hop on the Blue Line at Washington to connect to the Red Line to Union Station. However, when we looked at our watches after lunch at a small café, it was nearly 3 – the witching hour when the streets would be returned to car traffic. So the southern end of the route will need to wait for the 4th CicLAvia.

We’re anxiously awaiting CicLAvia on Sunday, April 15, 2012 – and hope to see you there!

Near one of the hubs of the CicLAvia route and also a Metro transfer point, Union Station bustles with bikes.

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About Metro Duo

Helping Los Angeles visitors and residents find events and activities accessible by Metro Rail — see our blog: https://metroduo.wordpress.com
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