Westchester’s popular Bicycle Sundays program was in jeopardy of being eliminated after it was eliminated from the county budget last December, but thanks to a $40,000 sponsorship by Con Edison and Friends of Westchester County Parks, the iconic program has been preserved.
Since 1974, Westchester County residents have been enjoying the popular Bicycle Sundays program that opens a 6.5-mile stretch of the historic Bronx River Parkway to bicyclists and other non-motorized uses on a series of Sundays each year. The 2012 Bicycle Sundays program kicked off May 6 following a ceremony outside the Westchester County Center.
“Bicycle Sundays is an iconic Westchester program -- one that thousands enjoy each Sunday, said Elizabeth Bracken-Thompson, chair of the Friends of Westchester County Parks board. “This is an excellent example of how private sector businesses can work with government to ensure that popular programs such as Bicycle Sundays can continue, even in a tough economic climate. We are grateful to Con Edison for stepping up and working with Friends to help fund this important program.”
Sandra Miller, director of Public Affairs for Con Edison, said, “We appreciate this opportunity to work with Friends, one of our Westchester not-for-profit partners, and Westchester County in this meaningful community initiative that will be enjoyed by county residents and their families.”
County Executive Robert P. Astorino once again thanked Con Edison and the Friends for picking up the cost of the program. “This partnership assures that thousands of loyal Bicycle Sunday fans will be able to enjoy their favorite program this year,” he said.
On hand for the ceremony were Friends of Westchester County Parks Executive Director Joseph Stout; members of the Friends of Westchester County Parks board; and Westchester County Parks Commissioner Kathleen O’Connor.
Con Edison’s Miller, who is a member of the Friends of Westchester County Parks Board of Trustees, said quality-of-life issues are very important to the company. “We have a long-standing tradition of committing to programs that affect the social vitality of the people in our service areas. Bicycle Sundays do just that – provide healthy fun for young and old from across the county.”
Bicycle Sundays annually attract 60,000 participants on weekend dates in May, June and September except Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends. The event runs through six municipalities: White Plains, Hartsdale/Greenburgh, Scarsdale, Eastchester, Tuckahoe and Yonkers. The course runs from the Westchester County Center in White Plains, south to Scarsdale Road in Yonkers, a round-trip of 13.1 miles. There are many points of entry and exit along the way. Parking is available at the County Center lot in White Plains for a fee of $5. Bicycle Sundays 2012 are May 6, 13 and 20; June 3, 10, 17 and 24; and September 9, 16, 23 and 30. Hours are 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.