GREENVILLE, N.C. — EC Velo, Pitt Co.’s cycling club, along with the City of Greenville are again sponsoring the local annual national Ride of Silence on May, 18th. This will be the 14th time that a local organizer has put together this chapter of the annual international event.

This hour-long, silent ride is being held locally to raise awareness for the increasing need for safer, inclusive, and accessible streets for all, to honor bicycle riders of all types who have been killed or injured, and raise awareness of cyclists and motorists safely sharing roads that are appropriately designed.

With the pandemic and previous statewide stay-at-home orders, cycling, running, and walking have all dramatically increased as people enjoy their outside communities and seek to increase their personal health with these permitted activities. The co-occurring reduction in motor vehicle traffic, congestion, and less polluted air has highlighted the increased demand for safer accessible streets, crosswalks, and sidewalks for all users.

Motorists are reminded to obey speed limitations, yield to vulnerable road users, not to text while driving, and to share the roads with all users. NC state law requires motorists to change lanes completely or provide at least four feet of clearance when passing any cyclist in a no-passing zone. Cyclists are reminded to remain off city sidewalks, ride with the traffic flow, and obey all traffic signals.

This approximately twelve-mile-long ride is open to all ages. This year there is also a shorter six-mile option utilizing more of the Tar River greenway. Helmets must be worn, and use of rear, red, blinking safety lights is highly recommended.

There is no registration fee or charge for this public event. Independent bicycle riders (e.g. no training wheels) of all ages and types are encouraged to join this police vehicle escorted ride. It shall be ridden as a group at about a 12 mph pace on Wednesday evening before sunset.

Participating cyclists should meet at the Greenville Bicycle Company on Clark St at 6 pm ready to ride out at 6:30 pm; joining tens of thousands of cyclists worldwide who will be riding at the same time. Cyclists unable or unwilling to join this permitted public parade are encouraged to ride on a trainer, solo, or with their family members during this time in solidarity with cyclists around the world and share the rides via social media with the keyword #RideofSilence2022. Posting to the organization’s Facebook page is also encouraged:

The silent ride is predicted to be completed around 7:45 pm. It will be then followed by a social gathering at the Pitt Street Brewery. Food from Anita’s Mexican Restaurant’s food truck will also be available at the brewery. It is being sponsored, supported, and marshaled by members of ECVelo, escorted and followed by the Greenville Police Department as a permitted public parade, and mechanical support has been offered from the Greenville Bicycle Company prior to the event.