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Bike ride brings art and community together

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Maydeen Merino
Staff Writer

The dA Center for the Arts presented “Color of Wheels,” teaming up with the Pomona Bike Coalition for a 2.5-mile bike ride around Pomona on Saturday.

The “Color of Wheels” event is for beginning bike riders who are able to ride around downtown Pomona at an easy and relaxed pace.

“All you need is a bicycle, we are just about riding bikes and having fun as well as encouraging more people to ride bikes,” member of the Pomona Bike Coalition John Trendler said.

This was the first “Color of Wheels,” event and many people said they were not sure what to expect.

“We were not familiar with this event so we took a chance on it, and it was a nice slow easy pace, and my take away is just to appreciate when there is a strong community that wants to support art,” Mike Suarez said, bike rider and resident of Chino Hills.

The event began at 9 a.m. at the dA Center with an opening presentation by president of the dA Center Chris Toovey, who spoke about the event and the significance of the murals the riders will be passing by throughout the city.

“Color of Wheels” consisted of about 18 riders also with the help of three members of the Pomona Bike Coalition, where they helped lead the way throughout the city and told the history behind each art piece.

During the bike ride, riders stopped by eight public art pieces around downtown Pomona.

Riders saw artwork such as “Roman Goddess of Fruit Trees,” a glass mosaic piece put onto a concrete background with a fountain build in front of the artwork created by Jean and Arthur Ames at Millard Sheets Studio in 1962.

“There is some really cool detail in there and I like it that it has the water feature there as well it’s kind of relaxing,” Jane Suarez said, bike rider and resident of Chino Hills.

“Envision the Future” is a mural painted by a team of painters including Chris Toovey in 2004, which has a Tongva First Nation woman on the left side, with her arm extended out while a white dove flies out from her hand, symbolizing peace.

“I think just driving through the city and seeing that there is public art and that the art talks about this indigenous center, talks about not just Pomona but Pomona Valley, and that’s kind of what public art does, it’s a way to speak for the community,” Toovey said.

Jane Suarez is a beginner rider who was a bit hesitant participating in this event but overall had a good experience.

“If they do this exact event again I would probably bring my daughter and grab some family and friends to join,” Suarez said.

The Pomona Bike Ride Coalition has a bike ride around Pomona every first Saturday of the month at Shaun Diamond Plaza at 8:30 a.m. and 7-mile ride with stops to speak about historical place within Pomona.

Maydeen Merino can be reached at maydeen.merino@laverne.edu.

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