Archive for the ‘Event Reports’ Category

2018 Tour De Staten Island

Saturday, May 5th, 2018
On April 22, 2018 three  of our New York Unicycle Club members took part in this years Tour de Staten Island. David Bagley, Abdullah Wright (on the right) and myself.  David Bagley's daughter, Megan, also participated by riding her bicycle for the entire 50 mile route. Us unicyclists took the 35 mile ride route that winds it way though various neighborhood mainly in the northwest and southwest portions of the borough. The ride has quite a few challenging hills. This years tour was a rough ride for Abdullah and I. Abdullah had rode about 18 miles the day before and I had not had the opportunity to do any training rides due to illness. In any event with my thighs were screaming in protest, I was able to finish. It was the second consecutive year of the club's participation in the tour. It is a great ride with thousands of cyclists participating in both the 35 mile and 50 mile routes. The 50 mile route takes you out to a circuitous eastern tour of the island.  I was  really fun ride with free beer at the end to motivate you to finish.  I look forward to riding this same tour next year with proper training in preparation.

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ May 5, 2018

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2017 Tour de Bronx

Sunday, October 29th, 2017
[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="510" caption="NYUC members with the Bronx Borough President"][/caption]

On Sunday, October 22, 2017, three club unicyclist, Rodrigo Sanz, Abdullah Wright, and myself set out from 161st and Grand Concourse for a 25 mile tour of the borough of the Bronx. First established in 1994, this event has continued to grow over the years to the point where this year there were approximately 7,000 registered cyclists.  There are a litany of sponsors for the Tour de Bronx event, some provide funding some providing fuel, swag or volunteer participation. Enthusiastically leading this all day event is the Bronx Borough President, Ruben Diaz Jr. The Borough President gives an inspirational speech to launch the each branch of the tour.  The 25  and 40 mile tour routes scenically wined their way through the Bronx on the streets, through parks and cycling paths. There are a few rest stops along the way where tour sponsors provide water, bagels and protein bars. The circular route ends to a big welcome rally at the New York Botanical Garden we  were welcomed by a live musical performance, Dominos pizza, water or energy drink and free Tour de Bronx t-shirt. It really is a fun ride that I have had the opportunity to participate in this tour for the third consecutive year. Throughout the ride we receive a lot of awesome support for the sport of unicycling from our fellow cyclists. This year we were almost excluded from riding due to a misunderstanding of unicyclists ability to ride long distances by the tour's organizers. We like to thank Olga Luz Tirado the executive director of the Bronx Tourism Council for patiently listening to the three of us collectively lobby for our inclusion by pointing out how we have been participating in supporting cycling in the Bronx by completing this event multiple times. Seeing the photo albums of previous tour events on our Flickr site, sealed the deal. In addition to the photo above, you can check out additional photos recorded at this year's event by clicking on the photo above or following this Flickr link. In addition, The photo below of our participation was included in an online article on the Riverdale Press website. My thanks to their Chief Photographer, Julius Motal for including us in the following photo that links to the Riverdale  Press article. You can enjoy more of Julius' work by checking out some of Julius' blog posts.

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="510" caption="Photo courtesy of Julius Motal, Rivedale Press"][/caption]

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ October 29, 2017

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The 2017 Four Days of the Festival

Monday, October 9th, 2017


Day One

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="2017 Unicycle Festival Day One (Click photo to view album)"][/caption]

On Thursday, August 31, 2017, the first day of the 8th annual New York City Unicycle Festival, unicyclist numbering 14 set out from the starting point location in the photo at the southern most point of the Manhattan Waterfront Greenway cycling path. The path begins just across the street from Battery park. The path follows along western coast of Manhattan along side  the Hudson River.  The group enjoyed a scenic ride north along the path to emerge on to the streets after passing through Riverside Park. They then traveled east through the street to enter Central Park where the group proceeded to ride south on the park drive making a lunch time rest stop at the Columbus Circle park exit area. After lunch the group continued south down Broadway to stop in the center of Time Square for a group photo. From there, the group traveled west through the midtown streets returning to the Waterfront Greenway Cyling path for the return trip back to Battery Park.

Day Two

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="499" caption="2017 Unicycle Festival Day Two (Click photo to view album)"][/caption]

Day two of the festival featured the customary annual afternoon traverse of the Brooklyn Bridge in celebration of Brooklyn Unicycle Day. A total of 48 individual unicyclists crossed over the bridge from the borough of Manhattan onto the borough of Brooklyn. From the foot of the bridge the entire group proceeded to make their way via the on street bicycle lanes over to Grand Army Plaza (pictured above). The entire group crossed the plaza to ride the length of Prospect Park and along the Ocean Parkway protected cycling path down to Coney Island. At Coney Island after fueling up at the Nathans Famous restaurant, the group assembled for a couple of group photos taken by Norman Blake.

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Day Three

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="504" caption="2017 Unicycle Festival Day Three (Click photo to view album)"][/caption]

On day three of the festival, unicyclists and non unicyclists alike were treated to a plethora of unicycle festivities on Governors Island. The day one on Governors Island as always well attended. Throughout the day unicycle activities were in perpetual motion with background music provided by D.J. Sky King. If you check out the photographs you will get a sense some of the goings on. From unicycle basketball, to unicycle sumo wrestling, to people in the learning center, to all of the unicycle performances and workshops. There were plenty of prizes passed out to the lucky winners at the annual raffle. A full day of fun and entertainment was witnessed by all who attended and participated.

Day Four

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="504" caption="2017 Unicycle Festival Day Four (Click photo to view album)"][/caption]

Day four of the festival was hampered by a morning down pour of rain that significantly reduced attendance to the festival and to Gorvernors Island on a whole. But that did not stop the the festival from carrying on. Mother Nature was kind so, by afternoon the dismal weather cleared up and the sun emerged onto the few unicyclists that did show up. Despite not having the crowds of the day before, all who attended managed to have a great time enjoying a day of unicycling on and around the island. If you have never been to one of the the unicycle festival I invite you to come out next year. The unicycle festival is quite expensive to put on every year so donations are more than welcome. If you would like to support the festival financially or by volunteering, please visit the New York Unicycle Festival website to find out how you can be a part of next years festival. If you have some time, you can always check out past festival photographs as well as the event photo albums from through out the year on the New York Unicycle Club Flickr site.

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ October 9, 2017

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2016 President’s day visit to Just One Wheel

Sunday, March 13th, 2016

2016 Just 1 wheel 43

For the fifth consecutive year, New York Unicycle club members have been invited to visit by Adam and Renie Cohen to visit the Just One Wheel balance facilities. This, as in the previous two years we visited them on the campus of the Driftwood Day camp. As you may remember, the last two years we experienced really rough winters that were really cold with a lot of snow. This year's Winter we thankfully had milder temperatures and no snow on the ground. So this year we took advantage and did some riding both indoors and out. Yes it did snow that afternoon. However, in the early afternoon with just a dusting of snow on the ground a bunch of us ventured outdoors to ride around the campus. We had a great time. I would like to again thank Adam, Renie and the Balance Brothers, Ziggy and Ikey for inviting us out to spend the afternoon with them.

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ March 13, 2016

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Ride through Northeast Queens

Sunday, March 13th, 2016

Kissina Par Velodrome

Five senior members of the New York Unicycle Club set out for a 18 mile unicycle ride though northeast queens. The route of the ride started in Flushing Meadow Park and continued via the streets and bicycle paths onto the Vanderbuilt Motor Parkway Greenway to Alley Pond Park. It was a sunny brisk October day that was excellent for the ride. The above photograph was taken along the outside railing of the Kissena Velodrome located in Kissena Park. We visited the velodrome during the last leg of the ride that ended back a the Willets Point train station back at Flushing Meadow Park. It was a great ride. We all look forward to doing more rides like this throughout the five boroughs.

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ March 13, 2016

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Day Three and Four 2015 Festival

Monday, September 7th, 2015
[caption id="attachment_1871" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Group photo on day three of the festival"][/caption]

On Governors Island the activities of the 2015 New York City Unicycle Festival continued with an action packed two day program of unicycling featuring a costume contest, Unicycle basketball, Unicycle Hockey, Unicycle Sumo, a unicycle skills performance show, a raffle and much more. Unicyclist of all ages and backrounds from all over come to New York to participate and witness a fun gathering. Though the focus is on unicycling, multiple talents were on display with jugglers and gymnast displaying there talents.

Governor Island is in the midst of a 8 year renovation that is scheduled to be completed next year. There has been significant progress with this construction project. Those who have had the opportunity to attend the festival had the added bonus of being able to tour the island and enjoy the new cycling paths and other areas that have been installed on the island. This has been the fifth year of the festival. It was a well attended event that fun for all that attended.

Clicking one of the photos will take you to a slide show of the Photo album for that day on our Flickr site. There are a lot of photos for days two through four. If you prefer to browse each day's album you can click here for the Album page.

[caption id="attachment_1872" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Unicycle Sumo match on day four"][/caption]

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ September 7, 2015

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2015 NYC Unicycle Festival Day Two

Saturday, September 5th, 2015

For Brooklyn Unicycle day 2015 was officially celebrated by Sixty-two New York Unicycle Festival participants crossing the Brooklyn Bridge. the unicyclist depicted above all agreed that that that was not enough of a celebration. So, they continued on to ride 12. 5 additional miles across the borough to Coney Island. Once they made it to Coney Island and was met  by jugglers and unicyclist that did not participate for the full ride, we all partook in a needed refueling at Nathan's Famous, With appetites satiated, it was time for a group photo to be taken in front of Dino's Wonder Wheel. As in years past this was followed by a variety show performed at the Coney Island Shooting Gallery. After the show everyone with enough energy to stick around was treated to a free ride on Dino's Wonder Wheel. They was also able to witness the final Coney Island fireworks show of the 2015 summer season. It was truly a day full of unicycle celebration. You can click on the this link to go to the day two album or the click photo above to see a slide show of the photos I took throughout the day. Visit our Flickr page often to see what NYUC has been up to and who has been participating.

[caption id="attachment_1865" align="aligncenter" width="501" caption="Photo courtesy of Norman Blake"][/caption]

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ September 5, 2015

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Day One 2015 NYC Unicycle Festival

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

This group of group of cyclists gathered at the beginning of the Mahattan waterfront greenway bike path across from Battery Park at the southern tip of the island of  Manhattan fully intent to ride a few miles up the west side of the island to cross over to central park at the the center of island. The plan was to ride back down to Battery park via the on street bike paths along the east side of the island. Due to quite a few riders dropping out, collectively we decided to ride back along the same protected bike route. It was a great ride that was welcome addition to the festival. Click on the photo to go to the slideshow of the  Flickr album of photos of this day.

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ September 3, 2015

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Highbridge Crossing.

Tuesday, August 18th, 2015

A few of us Unatics decided to take up Bob Hickman of Unicycle Bridge Tour's on his invitation to the Highbridge Festival at Highbridge Park. It was an opportunity for us to traverse one of the oldest pedestrian bridges in the country. It is the oldest bridge in New York.  The HighBridge had just recently been reopened to pedestrians after being closed for more than 40 years. It has undergone a tremendous $61 million renovation by the New York City Parks department. The renovation was worth every penny. The work they did on the 125 foot high bridge is incredible. The bridge that is a pleasure to travel upon. There are places to sit and enjoy the views of  the water and the skyline of Manhattan.  Without having to compete with motorized vehicles. People can leisurely walk or ride between the island of Manhattan and the only borough that is actually on the main land of the United States, The Bronx. We had a great time hanging out at the festival, riding back and forth multiples times across the bridge.

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ August 18, 2015

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Visit to Just One Wheel 2015

Sunday, February 22nd, 2015

For the fourth consecutive President's day, members of the New York Unicycle club traveled out to eastern Long Island to have a little fun riding indoors with Just One Wheel. Just One Wheel balance facility is located on the campus of the Driftwood Day Camp. As you know, this club does not have an indoor venue. So we are always stoked to be able ride indoors for a change. When better to experience that indoor riding fun but when there is snow ice and freezing temperatures outside. We did not have the opportunity to ride around the Driftwood Day camp campus because of the ice and snow. However, that did not diminish the amount of fun we had by one bit.  We are thankful to Adam, Renie, Ziggy and Ikey Cohen for continuing to invite us out for a day of unicycle fun. In addition to the Just One wheel and  NYUC members in attendance we were joined by Kip Jones of the King Charles Troupe. The Troupe is currently touring the country performing with the Ringling Bros. Circus gold group.  Kip having just completed his recovery and rehabilitation from knee surgery and was eager to get back on his unicycle. We were more than happy to have him riding with us.

Ken Springle - Ken Springle @ February 22, 2015

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