Thursday, June 29, 2006

For Immediate Release

Cyclists will gather at Central Park on Friday June 30 at 4:30pm to celebrate what is anticipated to be the largest Critical Mass ride in Winnipeg’s history.

Critical Mass is a monthly celebration of human-powered transport aimed at creating a leaner, greener culture. Critical Mass began in San Francisco in 1992, and has grown to include over 300 cities worldwide. City councillors, pastors, grandparents, students, business owners, and life-long bicycle commuters will gather to celebrate their independence from the soaring cost of gasoline and the harmful effects of car culture.

“The euphoria that comes from riding together with a big group of happy cyclists is something that everyone should experience. Car-filled streets can be so hostile, but a bunch of bikes make them beautiful” says year-round commuter Cliff Lee.

While wary of the recent history of police brutality that has marred past Critical Mass rides, cyclists are optimistic that the upcoming ride will be fun and safe for all. In an open email to cyclists, police officer Frank May wrote that the Winnipeg Police Service would make “an effort to negotiate the groundwork for a peaceful ride on June 30th 2006 and rides there after (sic).”

[The police have been the primary source of violence at past rides. The key to a peaceful Critical Mass is for the police to refrain from abusing their power.]

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