Orlando's monthly Critical Mass
rides generally exist to force drivers to acknowledge the fact that they have to share the streets with bicycles, at least theoretically. But this Friday, April 10, Critical Mass and Wunderground Cycling Group are organizing a special ride dedicated to saving Constitution Green Park. As you may have heard, Constitution Green is a privately owned plot of land that the city leases and maintains as a park, but the owners are preparing to sell it to developers. Orlando says it has tried to buy the property from the owners, but so far they have declined. People have been rallying to request that the city find some way to save the park, which is home to one of the city's "significant" trees, a giant old oak that's estimated to be 125-175 years old (check out this video
posted by the Orlando Sentinel
that profiles the tree, which includes some aerial footage that shows just how massive it is).
The ride is being called the Eco-Critical Mass
(or just Eco-Mass), and it starts and ends at Constitution Green Park. It will take cyclists on a tour of the city's "significant trees" (see map above). Anyone and everyone who cares about the park (or any of the city's parks, really) is encouraged to join the ride. One of the organizers told us a week ago that he'd love to see hundreds of people riding through the streets of Orlando to let the city know how important preservation of green space is to citizens – so if you care and you have a bicycle, show up and ride. The route Critical Mass is taking is about six miles long, but you're allowed to quit whenever you get tired.
When: meet at 5:35 p.m., Friday, April 10
Where: Constitution Green Park, 300 S. Summerlin Ave.
Who: Anyone with a bicycle who cares about city parks
From the ride's Facebook page:
So we are going to try a new thing here... Let's see how this rolls! The Wunderground Cycling Group and Orland Critical Mass have been called to action! We have been asked to raise awareness of the destruction of one of Orlando's oldest parks, Constitution Green. To do our part we are putting together this BICYCLE RIDE APRIL 10th MEETING AT CONSTITUTION GREEN!!! Please join us as we tour the 8 oldest trees and parks in Orlando! RIDE WILL BEGIN AND END AT CONSTITUTION GREEN! Ride meets at 5:30 and rolls at 6pm!!! Fun will be had by all as we tour a different route, while raising awareness of a special green space! Bring lights, this ride will be longer but no one will be left behind, bring your friends and your mom!!! Join ORLANDO'S FIRST ECO-MASS!!!