Friday, May 20, 2011

Racing Through Solvang

I sat down to write this post and realized I had written something similar two years ago. The only difference today is that Lance Armstrong won't be here, and neither will I. Rather than being trapped with all the road closures, we're heading down to the beach for the day :)

If you want to win one of the ARCs I'm giving away, be sure to leave a comment on this other post. You have until Sunday night. Have a great weekend!

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Sometimes big things happen in small places.

Today the Amgen Tour of California makes its way through Solvang. It's astounding to me that part of this major world class event is staged in our little Valley. The riders fly by, about a block from my house. I watched from the bottom of the hill, where they rounded the corner, so close I could have reached out and touched them! I didn't want to get arrested so I kept my hands to myself :^)


The amount of people thronging our streets was pretty amazing. The booths, the groupies, the traveling masses that accompany this race -- it's overwhelming. It's not every day that you see a jumbo tv screen on Copenhagen Drive, towering over thousands of people, each hoping to catch a glimpse of the riders speeding by. Our population quadruples for the day when this event rolls through town.

One of my neighbors, a semi-pro biker, paid the thousand dollars to ride in the amateur pre-race. Other friends volunteered on the route or helped cook and serve food to the riders. For this one day each year, the town shuts down to accommodate the time trial. We don't get mail, many roads are closed, schools are out and we all throng downtown to see the spectacle.

This is the fourth year that Solvang has hosted Stage 6 of the race, and the first time I've been up close and personal with it. Soon the EZ ups will come down, the gates will be loaded and the bikers will move on to the next place.

And Solvang will go back to being a small town.

9 comments:

Laura Pauling said...

It's kind of nice when something big comes to a small town! :)

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Cool. We never get anything like this!

Anne Gallagher said...

I'm with you, I'd head to the beach. We used to have stuff like this in the town where I lived. Makes me cringe every time I see a bicycle on the road.

salarsenッ said...

I'm with Laura. Enjoy your time at the beach. We haven't seen the sun here for weeks.

Hardygirl said...

What fun!! I love it when a whole town rallies around an amazing event.

Have a blast at the beach. I'm feeling the need for a little beach fix ....

sf

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Have a great weekend, Sherrie! :-)

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

Lots of cool stuff happens in Solvang! We went there all the time when I was a kid in So. Cal. :) Your kids are lucky little ones to grow up there.

Marianne said...

It sounds like this is one of those things you need to experience once and then be at the beach listening to it on the radio every year after!

kathrynjankowski said...

I"ll bet they were happy to get decent weather. The first stage at Lake Tahoe was snowed out and when they got to Sacramento the streets were still slick with rain.

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