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Cottonwood Heights Journal

Second annual Family Fun Ride gets people (and zombies) biking city streets

Jun 13, 2018 05:12PM ● By Josh Wood

Zombie children took the lead at the Family Fun Ride. (Joshua Wood/City Journals)

By Joshua Wood | [email protected]

Zombies were spotted biking through the streets of Cottonwood Heights on June 11. 

The city was involved, as were local businesses and volunteers. The second annual Zombie Family Fun Ride gave community members the opportunity to dress up, get out, and learn more about biking in Cottonwood Heights. 

The event was sponsored by the Cottonwood Heights Business Association and Revive Sport & Spine. Agencies from the state of Utah were also on hand to offer children tips on traffic rules for bicycles and safe riding. 

“I’m teaching kids about bike safety skills and teaching them about the rules that they need to follow on the road, which is pretty much the same as cars,” said Marques Varela of the Department of Public Safety. “A big part of bike safety is that you’ve got to be predictable out there.” 

The evening started with music, food and zombie face-painting outside of Cottonwood Heights City Hall. During the registration period, community members could meet local businesses and grab a bite to eat at a nearby food truck. Also on-site was a bike rodeo to teach kids safe bike riding.

Businesses at the event focused on health and active living, from sports chiropractic specialists to bike shops, fitness centers and more. 

“We focus on the back pain and the joint health for people who want to get out there and be active,” said Andrew Reheisse of Revive Sport & Spine. “The biggest thing we see for cyclists and other athletes is back pain. Our goal is to teach people how to do things to help manage that.” 

This was not a typical family event, with zombies weaving around orange traffic cones, listening to ’80s pop music, and talking with local business people, who also happened to be zombies. 

“It’s a great way for members of the community to get out of their houses, out in the sun, enjoy the outdoors, and to do so with members of the community and the business community,” said Cottonwood Heights Public Relations Specialist Dan Metcalf, Jr. “It’s a city event, too. We love these kind of events to get this community out together to get to know each other, get to know the businesses that help to make life so great here, and to be together.”

Once the fun at City Hall was complete, participants lined up for the ride. With a send-off from local police and firefighters, the zombie bikers rode away from City Hall and into the neighborhood streets to the east. The ride lasted for up to an hour. The pleasant drop in temperature that Monday evening meant a lovely 80-degree ride for the dozens of children and adults who participated.

“We want to promote family bike riding in the city,” said Peri Kinder, who does business development and licensing for the city. “People don’t realize that there are a lot of really fun bike routes for kids to go on that are safe.” 

The aim of the city and sponsoring businesses was to promote getting outside, enjoying the biking opportunities in Cottonwood Heights and coming together as a community. Add dozens of zombies to the mix, and it made for a unique event.