Planning is already underway for the 2012 Tour de Perris bicycle ride as a team of City employees strives to top the success of last year’s inaugural event by doubling the number of participants and using funds generated by the fall ride to fund Perris recreation efforts.
Perris elected officials and City employees were ecstatic about the results of last year’s Tour de Perris, begun in conjunction with the City’s Centennial. The event featured four different rides—100-miles, 62-miles, 30-miles and an 8-miler for families-that drew more than 300 participants from as far away as Hawaii. This year, the City has added a “Tour de Tots” obstacle training course for young children on the City Hall Campus.
This year’s event is scheduled for Oct. 6.
A webpage detailing prices to register and other pertinent information has been created. Interested riders should visit cityofperris.org/
City officials said they were heartened by comments received from riders following last year’s event. The City received universal praise for the Tour de Perris, prompting the City Council to authorize this year’s event and considering making the Tour de Perris an annual showcase.
City Manager Richard Belmudez, a cycling enthusiast and a member of the committee planning the 2012 Tour de Perris, said officials likely will use money from admission fees and jersey sales to purchase bicycles for deserving students and scholarships to City aquatics programs.
The idea, he said, is to “use the passion for cycling to promote health and fitness for people of all ages in the City.”
Perris Mayor Daryl Busch said he has talked to people about the bike ride and said “excitement for the Tour de Perris is already building.”
“People are very excited about it and they are interested in participating in it,” Busch said.
Perris City Councilwoman Joanne Evans said she was pleased and surprised at the level of enthusiasm displayed by riders after the inaugural event. Evans spent hours at City Hall watching the riders cross the finish line during last year’s event, talking to the participants and getting first-hand accounts of their experiences.
“Everybody had a great time,” Evans said.
Perris City Councilman Mark Yarbrough rode the 30-mile portion of the Tour de Perris last year and said he might step up to the 62-mile ride in 2012.
He said he would like to turn the bicycle ride into a “signature event” that attracts hundreds of participants to the City each year. He credits several staff members who ride for pleasure with having the expertise to make the Tour de Perris an event that will spread through the riding community.
“This is the kind of quality-of-life issue that makes Perris a great place to live,” Yarbrough said.