Ride Avon First event set for Saturday, May 20
IF YOU GO ...
What: Ride Avon First inaugural event.
When: Saturday, May 20, from 1:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Guided tours on the hour from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Beaver Creek Point Trail in the West Avon Preserve
Party in Nottingham Park from 1:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Scavenger hunt free for all ages starting at 2 p.m.
More information: Find the town of Avon’s survey about town-owned properties at https://survey.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_cGAo5P3ldmOezpX.
The event is called Ride Avon First, but that doesn’t mean you have to enjoy it on a bike.
One of the main features of Saturday’s celebration, which will be centered in Nottingham Park in Avon from 1:30 to 6:30 p.m., is a 75-foot modular pump track in the park. You can ride it on both a bike and a skateboard, and organizers are hoping cyclists and skateboarders try both.
As town of Avon officials start deciding how to use some of the town’s land, a permanent pump track not unlike the temporary one that will set up on Saturday will be among the options. The town is currently surveying residents and guests in their effort to plan the future of town-owned properties.
“I’m hoping people have a really great time (on the pump track), and then they get on that survey and try to get one implemented for the town,” said Special Events Production Assistant Louise Duncan. Find the survey online by clicking here.
Ride Avon First will be the first event Duncan has worked on as an Avon employee. She got here at the end of March and one of the things she noticed right away was how well connected the town was.
“It’s really easy to get from Nottingham Park around town,” she said. “So our idea with this event was to let people know how well connected the community is here.”
The main showcase of that connectivity will take place through scavenger hunts on Saturday. They will be free to join, teams can be as large or small as you want and extra points will be awarded for best costumes.
“We have some pretty awesome prizes up for grabs,” Duncan said.
Due to the nature of some of those prizes, teams have been divided into two groups, 21-and-over, and under 21 with a team leader who is 18 or older. All are welcome to join, and while sign up will be available on site, teams are encouraged to preregister online.
It’s a points based competition, and teams will receive 10 extra points for pre-registering. Check in begins at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday at the information booth at Nottingham Park. Clue sheets will be distributed starting at 1:30 p.m. The sheets will be available at the information booth until 2:00 p.m. for late-comers.
Teams will self-guide through the clue sheet. Figure out as many as you can, as quickly as you can, to earn the most points. Solve a clue and take a selfie in front of the destination to earn between 10 and 50 points. Find hidden treasures identified on your clue sheet, which will be placed at several downtown locations to earn an additional 50 points. Hidden treasures should be presented to the judges at the finish line. Keep in mind you’ll need a smartphone to participate, and every team member must be in every picture to qualify.
The finish line will close at exactly 3:30 p.m. All teams should return to the stage at Nottingham Park before that time. Staff will walk scavengers through scoring to determine who our top scoring teams are. Judges will then go through the clue sheets and photos of the top scoring teams to calculate points. The final teams will be asked to show their photos to the judges for confirmation. All participants will stand with the judge as they confirm the points earned.
The event will actually start at 11 a.m. with the Walking Mountains Science center leading hikes every hour from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. Take off will be from the Beaver Creek Point Trail head in Wildridge. Participants will learn about the protected penstemon, a very rare flower native to our area, as well as wildlife found in the West Avon Preserve.
At Nottingham Park, Avid for Adventure will set up a kids mountain bike course in the grass. There will be instructors on site to encourage children to explore new possibilities on bikes. Helmets, bikes, and instructions will be included at the course.
A DJ will be cranking out tunes at Nottingham Park, and vendors like Nicki’s Quickie will provide food. Local shops including Christy Sports, Sun & Ski, Venture Sports will also have booths set up and will be doing demos.
“We’re trying to expand the calendar a little, so it’s not so heavy in the summer and we have great activities going on all year,” Duncan said. “We want to have something for everyone, all the time. We see this as something that could be an annual spring event.”
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