A helmeted group of Rock Hill residents took to the streets on Sunday afternoon to celebrate Mother’s Day with a nearly 8-mile trek in balmy weather.
The third annual Mother’s Day Sweet Treat Ride traversed one of the city’s newest bike trails – a mix of low-traffic roads and greenway that takes riders off the heavily-traveled Dave Lyle Boulevard.
The event coincides with National Bike Month in May and is more evidence of Rock Hill’s growing enthusiasm for cycling. Recent additions to the city include new bike routes exclusively for riders, routes meant to be shared by cyclists and cars, and a professional BMX center that will open later this year.
“He’s beside himself for the BMX track,” said Holly Stuart of 7-year-old son Clayton, who showed up for the ride dressed in a tie-dyed shirt and a pair of neon yellow biking gloves.
Stuart, an outdoor education programmer with the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, is an avid bike rider herself, and preferred the ride to going to the spa.
“This is more my speed,” she said.
Her 11-year-old daughter, Courtney, also participated in the ride from Glencairn Gardens in downtown Rock Hill to the commercial center of Manchester Village.
The family lives in the Riverwalk area of Rock Hill – current home to the city’s Giordana Velodrome, an arena for track cycling, and future site of the BMX Supercross Track.
The Mutuc family also showed up for the ride, including 9-year-old Angelo, who just learned to ride a bike last year.
Angelo’s mother, Mae Mutuc, said she was trying to stay in shape “so I can keep up with the kids.”
City of Rock Hill Outdoor Recreation Coordinator Tom Bell greeted the small group of bikers with reusable water bottles and safety tips.
“You can get from different places safely if you know where to go,” said Bell, a frequent biker. “We’re trying to promote alternate transportation routes, active transportation, people-powered movement.”
The group made it to Manchester Village within an hour, stopping for frozen yogurt before heading back to Glencairn Gardens for the finish.
Clayton’s favorite part? “Riding!” Angelo’s favorite part? “Downhill.”
Stuart said she’s glad she and her kids were able to be active on a day usually reserved for relaxing.
“I didn’t have to do dishes,” she said of the breakfast her children made for her in honor of Mother’s Day. “Tomorrow, the fantasy is gone,” she laughed.