Bikathon jumpstarts Pinatubo memorial celebrations

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Monday, June 6, 2011


CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- Thousands of bikers and cyclers on Saturday pedaled their way through a 66-kilometer route that signaled the start of the commemoration of the 20th Mt. Pinatubo Memorial Day in this city.

Cyclists converged as early as 5 a.m. in front of the Carworld offices, until cycling caravan chairman Alfrito "Bong" Mah and Mayor Oscar Rodriguez hit the horn for the kickoff ceremony to culminate on June 15, the exact day when Kapampangans experienced Pinatubo's ashfall, to the eventual devastating lahar flows in 1995.

During the brief pre-caravan ceremonies, Rodriguez pointed out the importance of the cycling caravan and commemorating the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo itself.

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"Three things: One is the importance of biking to our health. Second, its relation to environmental preservation. Third is the message we shall carry through our route---that of celebrating the Kapampangans’ indomitable spirit," he said.

After the horn was sounded, the bikers snaked their way from Barangay Del Carmen, Bulaon, Calulut, Malino then breaking into Barangay Mining, Pandan and Sto. Rosario in Angeles City, where the second drinking station at Nepo Mall was established.

From Porac, the caravan moved to Sta. Rita, Betis in Guagua, Cabalantian and ended up at Heroes Park in this city.

City of San Fernando Community Affairs Division chief Donny Sayre said a huge number of groups, aside from walk-in registrants, participated in the historical run.

"We have about 1,200 cyclists in this caravan," said Sayre.

The groups who registered with CAD, Sayre said, include the Cabalen Cycling Club, Bikers Alliance of Pampanga, Mountain Bike of Pampanga, St. Vincent of Quebiawan Riders, Mexico Bikers Association, Juliana Extreme Bikers, Bikers of St. Isidore, Betis Bikers, De La Paz Norte Senior Citizens Bikers, Padyak Minalin Bikers Union, Arayat Bikers Association, Apalit Bikers Club, Weekend Trail Riders, Sampaloc Cycling Club, Ultimate Bikers Cycling Club of San Nicolas, Pelaton Bikers, City Hall Employees’ Bikers led by City Administrator Fer Caylao, Dawn Mountain Bikers, San Jose Bikers, Bulaon Lagalag Bikers, Siklista Apalitenos, Villa Carmen Subdivision (San Matias) Cycling Club, San Jose (Angeles City) Bikers Association, Councilor Noel Tulabut Bike Group, PHS ’74 Bike Group, Kabalikat Civicom, Safety First Bikers, PNCA Bikers, Lubao Cycling Club and the HAU Bikers Association.

Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on June 06, 2011.

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