TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

Entertainment

June 9, 2014

‘Come play in the street’ Sunday during City Streets

CORBIN — By Jeff Noble / Staff Writer

Back on the afternoon of Sunday, May 18, part of Main Street in downtown Corbin may have looked miles out of character for some folks.

Instead of the usual car and truck traffic headed one way north, there were no vehicles going straight, turning left, turning right, or looking for a parking place.

What the naked eye did see were people walking, jogging, using strollers or skateboards, and quite a few bicycles.

Throw in some music, some yoga and Zumba classes, some free bike tune-ups, repairs and demonstrations, and you have what’s called the first-ever “City Streets” event.

A lot of people liked it. Very much.

And from 2 - 4 p.m. Sunday, the Downtown Corbin organization will do it again.

Five blocks of South Main — from 4th Street up to Gordon Street — will be blocked off to vehicular traffic for the second “City Streets” event, which Downtown Corbin’s Director, Andy Salmons, says will be a lot bigger than last month’s get-together.

“We want to invite our community to come play in the street. We’ll have live music and more. And the Union College Cycling Team will be there, doing demonstrations and repairs. If families want to come down and bring their kids and let them have a good time without worrying about an automobile on Main Street, that would be no problem,” he said.

This Sunday’s “City Streets” is the second of five to be held on Main Street this season.

Presented by Cycle Corbin — an initiative that encourages bicycle riding, getting outdoors, exercising, riding with families and friends, and being healthy for the environment — the series is sponsored by Baptist Health Corbin hospital.

Sean Trinque, the Union College Cycling Team’s Head Coach, was at last month’s City Streets.

He and the crew liked what they saw on that roped-off stretch of Main.

“We were there. I think it’s great and it’s great to see local communities adopting cleaner ways of travel, like cycling, walking, jogging, and even skateboarding. First and foremost, it shows there are people in this area who like to be outdoors and want a healthier lifestyle. There’s also people who like this kind of lifestyle, but they don’t know where to go to, or turn to. This is their avenue to come and find out for themselves,” Trinque said Friday during a phone interview from the college in Barbourville.

The day gives those who use bicycles as a form or recreation, or transportation, or exercise a chance to learn more about the open road or trail, as well as keeping their two-wheeled instruments in top condition.

Trinque added it gives those younger cyclists a chance to enjoy themselves, and learn about safety from the team’s perspective.

“At ‘City Streets,’ we’ll be teaching bicycle safety and we’ll also be doing free tune-ups for anybody who stops by our table. For the young kids, we’ll be handing out little coloring sheets, some games, and have some fun competition. We’ll be doing things with them like, ‘Let’s see who can ‘Bunny Hop’ the highest,’ or ‘Who can pop a ‘Wheelie’ the highest,’ and things like that. We’ll also be giving out free T-shirts, and we’ll have a lot of fun,” he said.

What many people aren’t aware of is that the cycling team at Union College has been in existence since 1998.

According to the Union cycling team’s Facebook page, they’ve focused on mountain biking since their first rides 16 years ago. They’re also involved in the sport’s different aspects, such as Cross Country, Downhill, and Short Track Dual Slalom.

More recently, a larger part of the team’s racing has been racing Cyclocross — a form of racing held in the fall and winter, and made up of many laps of a short course featuring pavement, grass, wooded trails, obstacles and steep hills. To get through the obstacles, the rider must quickly get off the bike, carry it while getting through the obstacle, and get back on the bike again.

Trinque noted the cycling team at Union College has raced in the USA College Cycling League. They’re also a member of the SCCC, the Southeastern Collegiate Cycling Conference.

“During that time, we’ve had a lot of great success. We’ve had 10 individual national champions, two team national championships, and seven conference championships. In our conference, the SCCC, we race schools from North Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Florida and South Carolina. We’re the only Kentucky school in the conference at this time. We really rely on the support of the people in this region, and we try to do whatever we can to give back to the community,” he pointed out.

Three more “City Streets” events will be held on these Sunday afternoons — July 20, August 17 and September 21. For more information, go to Downtown Corbin’s Facebook page.

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