BELOW: A scene from a past event
From Illinois Business Journal news services
EDWARDSVILLE – One of Edwardsville’s biggest events returns this Saturday with hundreds of racing cyclists, scores of children wearing helmets and thousands of spectators — many of whom will be clanging cowbells.
The Rotary Club of Edwardsville, and this year’s title sponsor, the Bank of Edwardsville, have announced the lineup of activities to take place in the sixth annual Edwardsville Rotary Criterium.
The Criterium is a fast-paced and entertaining afternoon and evening of high-speed professional bicycle races, free kids races, a “Pedal & Paint” Art Tent, a children’s helmet fitting/giveaway and eight hours of free live music, all on the streets of downtown Edwardsville.
The bike races are sanctioned by USA Cycling and hosted by the Edwardsville Rotary Club. The Criterium is a 0.7-mile loop course with seven challenging turns on the closed-off streets of downtown. Professional and amateur cyclists from 11 states descend on Edwardsville to compete for $10,000 in prize money – one of the largest one-day payouts for a bike race in the region.
Criterium visitors can enjoy free live music on stage in front of the Madison County Courthouse. This year’s lineup includes:
3 to 5:30 p.m: Exit 12 (Edwardsville’s own, playing contemporary hits)
5:30 to 8 p.m.: Howl at the Moon Dueling Pianos
8 to 10:30 p.m.: Jake Gehret & The Brokedown Sound (Motown Jam)
New this year, the event will feature a number of activities in the “Crit Kids” area located at the corner of Main and Vandalia. Parents can register their kids to participate in the annual Crit Kids Race. Four free kids races will be held in the following categories: 3 and under, 4-6 years, 7-8 years and 9-11 years. Kids must wear helmets. Registration is from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Kids Race Registration Tent in the Crit Kids Area. The Kids Races actually begin at 6:45 p.m.
Art lovers can make and take an original bicycle-related piece of artwork at the First Clover Leaf Bank / Edwardsville Arts Center Pedal & Paint Art Tent.
Also located in the Crit Kids area, Edwardsville Township, partnering with the Cardinal Glennon’s Kid Safety program will provide a free helmet fitting to all children and will be giving away helmets while supplies last.
Thanks to an “Open Containers Perimeter,” visitors to downtown establishments can purchase beverages in plastic containers and step onto the sidewalk to watch the race or enjoy the live music.
“I want to take this opportunity and thank the dozens of sponsors, the hundreds of Rotarians and community volunteers, the City of Edwardsville officials and staff and all of those individuals – especially my wife and family – who make this event happen,” said Race Director SJ Morrison. “Your financial support, hours of volunteering, love of this community and unwavering commitment remind me over and over again why I would never live anywhere else.”
Details about the 2015 event can be found by visiting www.EdwardsvilleCriterium.com or finding “Edwardsville Rotary Criterium” on Facebook. Cyclists can register at www.BikeReg.org
The Rotary Club of Edwardsville cited sponsors for their support: Title: the Bank of Edwardsville; Presenting: The city of Edwardsville and Edwardsville Township; Art Tent: First Clover Leaf Bank; Kids Race: Edwardsville Wrestling Club/Fellowship of Christian Athletes; Cat 1/2: Anderson Hospital; Cat 3: Metro East Park & Recreation District; Cat 4: Scott Credit Union; Women 3 /4: Sherer Law Offices; Masters 40+ 50+: Simmons Hanly Conroy; Cat 5: Homefield Energy; Juniors 9-18: Hortica; Women Open: Center for Advanced Orthopedics / Mid America Institute of Plastics and Cosmetic Surgery; Registration Table: Tor Hoermann; Officials Table: Patton Dental; Volunteer Check-In: Steve Ellsworth State Farm; Payouts Table: Cassens; Wheel Pit: Edwardsville Cyclery & Fitness Center; Concert Stage Sponsors: Madison Mutual, Mathis, Marifian & Richter Ltd., Bank of Springfield and Donnewald Distributing.