This year saw a considerable increase in the number of people using Bikebridge’s bike valet service at the Lethbridge Dragon Boat Festival on June 27 -28 (2015) in Lethbridge. Our usage numbers made it well into the triple digits — unofficially the count was ‘about 120’ — whereas other years we had only about 50 clients. At one point, our allotted space was so jammed with bicycles, we were concerned that we were running out of capacity! Unfortunately, we can’t show you any pictures of this because, the designated photographer who was so busy signing bicycles in, ahem . . . forgot to take a picture!!
Nonetheless, Dragon Boat Festival organizers who witnessed our over-loaded bike racks are already talking about how to increase our space and the number of racks for next year! We’ll be ready to take on even more patrons next year.
We noticed that a large number of the patrons were from out-of-town. It seems that members of out-of-town teams are bringing their bicycles with them, and using them as transportation to and from their venues over the weekend. Obviously, they have figured out that it is much easier to do that than hike down to Exhibition Park, all the way at the east end of Henderson Lake where there was free parking. Especially if you have to do it several times a day!
We also had an increase in families making an outing of the Dragon Boat Festival. Their brightly coloured trailers and tiny bikes certainly added a festive air to our bike racks. It makes it easy for those with short legs, and parents loaded down with sun hats, suntan lotion and snacks, to get close to the action without a long, hot walk into the park.
For all, a lot of fun and an indication that bicycling, and the expectation that bicycling will be supported, is growing in Lethbridge!