10,000 cyclists to descend on Seoul for annual bike festival
A large-scale bicycle festival hosting 10,000 cyclists from across the country will be held in parts of Seoul on Sunday.
The 2023 Seoul Bike Festival, hosted by the JoongAng Ilbo and JTBC, will be held between central and western Seoul on Sunday, sponsored by the city government of Seoul.
The annual spring event is an urban parade where thousands of cyclists pedal through the metropolitan city’s downtown streets. The non-competitive sports event will host 6,000 for a bike parade and 4,000 for free riding.
The 21-kilometer-long (13-mile) bike parade kicks off at Gwanghwamun Square in central Seoul at 8 a.m. on Sunday, with participants pedaling through the northern riverbank roads of the Han River to World Cup Park in Mapo District, western Seoul. Some parts of the roads along the parade course will be closed for as long as an hour on Sunday morning.
The free riding is the first of its kind, newly programmed for people who are unable to show up at the bike parade’s starting point. Participants in the free riding event can choose a 10-kilometer course of their choice and reach the finish line at the World Cup Park between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m.
The bike festival will offer several on-site events at the destination point, including the presentation of souvenirs such as medals and foldable chairs for finishers. The festival has already offered items for biking — shirts, gloves, socks and smartphone holders — for some participants who signed up during the registration period that opened on April 6 and closed when the 10,000-participant limit was filled.
The annual Seoul Bike Festival is open to people between the ages of 10 and 80.
For this year’s event, seven 79-year-olds signed up, according to the festival’s organizer and running platform operator Runable. People from all over the country have signed up for the event, from as far as Jeju Island.
BY SOHN DONG-JOO [email@example.com]