A patriotic-themed, youth-on-wheels summertime celebration launched locally in 2012 gets an enthusiastic repeat with “Pedal for the Medal,” a bicycle parade set to begin 6 p.m. Monday at Gainesville Civic Center, 311 S. Weaver St.
The bike rally, designed for kids ages 17 and younger and their parents, begins at the center and patriotic decorations are required for participation.
The first “Pedal” rally was conducted during the past summer on the heels of Gainesville’s participation in a national contest that resulted in the city being named “Most Patriotic Small Town” by Rand McNally and USA Today. Hundreds of children and their parents pedaled and marched in a procession saturated with adornments of red, white and blue.
The registration deadline for this year’s rally has already passed, but the event is free and open to the public and, as during the first rally, will include a free ice cream social at the civic center.
“The kids and families seemed to really enjoyed the parade last year and asked us if we were going to do it every year,” said Lynette Pettigrew of Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce. “It was so much fun that we decided, yes, let's do it again. It gives the kids an opportunity to be a participant in a patriotic event — which is great for the ‘Most Patriotic Small Town in America.’”
Kelly Fiore-Watson, a representative of the Abigail’s Arms outreach organization and local volunteer, said this recent addition to Gainesville’s annual event lineup reminds her of parades she attended as a young Lewisville resident.
“These kids will remember this event and the fun they had as they grow into adulthood,” she said.
For more information, call (940) 665-2831 or visit www.gainesvillecofc.com.