Letter to the Editor

LETTER: Supporting Pedal Putnam

Thursday, June 13, 2024

To the Editor:

On Saturday, June 22, more than 120 cyclists will be coming to Putnam County for the third edition of Pedal Putnam.

I know how much it takes for a community to support these events, and we want to do our best as cyclists to show our appreciation. We will also do our best to share the road this year especially as we all manage the construction.

We have riders coming from Indianapolis, Westfield, Avon, Columbus, Louisville and even Chicago. They will be coming into town Friday afternoon and early Saturday morning, and because of events like this and the Dust Bowl 100, Putnam County is growing as a cycling destination. I know that requires patience from all of you. Thank you.

This year’s ride will start and end on Franklin Street in front of Lost Hollow Beer Co. We’re calling it a bike party, and money raised will go to support the Friends of the Park and improve our trail system. But that also means we’ll be one more thing to maneuver around. I hope that is okay.

I wanted those outside our community to still see our downtown, especially since we have such great businesses here. These sorts of events can be huge for them, and I hope it is.

I love this community, and easily the best part of coordinating this event has been the incredibly generous and supportive folks who have stepped up. Shuee’s Furniture immediately stepped up as a supporter, and I am even getting Zach Shuee to hop on one of my bikes to do the 62.3-mile ride.

Sal Fernandez, our local James Beard-nominated chef, is also doing the ride, and he and the Breadworks team are donating donuts the day of the event.

Eric Wolfe with Prime Real Estate and Tammy Keenan with Ivy Tech stepped up to provide money for our T-shirts, and Gail Wilson has been great in returning some love after the great success of the Shamrock 5K. Nancy Michael and the team at First National Bank have been awesome.

Cam Humphreys from Humphreys’ Outdoor Power is donating a free power-washer to one lucky rider. Ginger Scott and Jared Jernagan were great about getting Rotary’s support for this ride. And Brooke Trissel with Putnam County Hospital and Paul Jedele from McDonald’s both pitched in money for two youth bikes we’ll be giving away on the day of the ride.

We’re fortunate to live in a place where so many people volunteer and give.

This year’s ride includes two longer routes that will travel mostly county roads north of town. I know that for a day, there’ll be some extra traffic on the road. We’ll do our best to respect the roads, but thank you in advance for your patience. Even better, join us. You can find out more about this year’s event at bikereg.com/pedal-putnam or at our Instagram account: @pedalputnam.

We have an entry-level 12-mile route that is family-friendly and e-bike friendly. That group will be leaving in front of Lost Hollow on Franklin at 9:15 a.m., and will include a brief ride through DePauw before a police escort takes them past our famous silo murals and on to the People Pathways. My goal is to create an event for all abilities and all types of riders, and registration will be open Saturday morning from 7-8:40 a.m. on Lost Hollow’s porch. That’ll be just the start of the bike party. So come join us for the party or for the ride.

Whether you ride a mile or a hundred, there’s a lot of good things to see in Putnam County.

Wes Kendall
Pedal Putnam Race Director ‘24