More than 400 turn out for Le Tour

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Riders embark on a 14-mile journey.
VENTNOR – Yellow shirts seemed to be everywhere on Sunday. Hundreds participated in the annual Le Tour de Downbeach Sunday, Sept. 9 which takes riders through Atlantic City, Ventnor, Margate and Longport for a family bicycling event.

Organizer Mike Wiesen said there were 468 participants this year.

“I think it was a great event. It was very calm and orderly even though people were anxious to get started,” Wiesen said.

He said each year organizers try to improve on the previous year; next year he may have all the riders line up on the boardwalk prior to the start.

Wiesen said the ride enjoyed perfect weather, and great cooperation by the all local police departments to have bicyclists ride through their towns.

Margate Business Association Executive Director Anna Maria Blescia-Courter said the "sea of yellow shirts" represents the coming together of the community and the dramatic growth of the event.

"Events like Le Tour also help to extend the summer for the businesses,” Blescia-Courter said.  “I know that a number of riders came from as far as Philadelphia so it's become somewhat of a destination event as well."

Wiesen said the money raised will fund recreation department equipment for baseball and softball teams.

He said his long-term goal is to raise enough funds to build a new batting cage in Ventnor.

“Anybody can do it. Hopefully our turnouts will grow as the years go by,” Wiesen said.

The event is sponsored each year by Tomatoe’s Restaurant and presented by the Ventnor Merchants Association, Margate Business Association, the Borough of Longport and the City of Atlantic City.

Photos and video by Shaun Smith

 

Le Tour de Downbeach rolls off to a start from Shaun Smith on Vimeo.

From left are Longport Commissioner Dan Lawler, Ventnor Mayor Mike Bagnell, Margate Mayor Mike Becker and Margate Commissioner Maury Blumberg.   Bill Subin of Margate, in the foreground, leads the pack of riders down the Ventnor boardwalk.   Liz Slater of Ventnor starts rolling during Le Tour de Downbeach.     Participants line up for the start at Newport Avenue and the boardwalk.   After officially starting Le Tour de Downbeach, organizer Diane Birkbeck follows riders on the boardwalk.   Returning from Atlantic City, bicyclists pass through Ventnor on their way to Margate.   Trish Smoger of Ventnor gets off to a great start.

 


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