North Texas Daily

Cyclists ride Denton weekly

Cyclists ride Denton weekly

September 09
22:54 2009

By Jordan Foster / Staff Writer –

Red flashing lights float above the asphalt as the creaking of foot pedals and rusty chains pierce the silence.

Every Tuesday night, a swarm of bicyclists take to the streets of Denton, riding with sporadic shouts and buzzing tires.

The group meets at 9:30 p.m. outside the Language building.

Participants of Denton’s Tuesday night community bike ride wait to crank their way around the 8-mile loop covering the west side of town. (Photo by  Drew Gaines / Photographer)

Participants of Denton’s Tuesday night community bike ride wait to crank their way around the 8-mile loop covering the west side of town. (Photo by Drew Gaines / Photographer)


Carson Coldiron, a business sophomore said that the group gives riders the opportunity to enjoy the camaraderie and strength in numbers.

The night ride’s popularity has increased throughout the years. Regulars said they have seen as many as 120 bikes at one time.

The group of around 50 riders waits to cross Carrol Blvd. via Oak St. during the Tuesday night community bike ride. (Photo by  Drew Gaines / Photographer)

The group of around 50 riders waits to cross Carrol Blvd. via Oak St. during the Tuesday night community bike ride. (Photo by Drew Gaines / Photographer)

The formation at times resembles a Tour de France style, mixed with the freedom of riding on sidewalks.

Coldiron said that every rider carries a “just ride” attitude.

“I really enjoy the ride, it’s a good, positive way to have fun and meet new people,” Coldiron said. “I don’t remember exactly how I found out about the ride, I think it was from my buddy who had a friend who was involved.”

Many in the group have been riding together since they were freshmen at UNT and some continue to ride even after graduation.

Andy Wherry, UNT alumnus, said the night ride is a tradition in which he likes to take part.

“I was drawn to it just like everyone is drawn to the bike and a mob mentality of let’s just all get together and do it,” Wherry said. “I kind of ran into it when I was riding through town and saw this huge swarm of bicyclists. I had a good time.”

The routes vary from week to week. Some nights, the route has taken the group as far as from the Language building to the Denton Airport on Airport Road.

The bikes on the excursion come in all sorts — everything from track bikes, race bikes, cruisers and custom bikes. Each bike dons its own colors, design and age.

Many of the participants in Tuesday's community bike ride strapped head and tail lights to their bikes in order to make themselves visible to mortorists and to other bikers. (Photo by  Drew Gaines / Photographer)

Many of the participants in Tuesday's community bike ride strapped head and tail lights to their bikes in order to make themselves visible to mortorists and to other bikers. (Photo by Drew Gaines / Photographer)

“Some bikes are put together like Frankenstein,” Wherry said. “You’ll see everything from race bikes to double-deckers.”

“An individual department might receive a small portion of those funds to take those students on a trip that would facilitate their research, so there might be some minor travel costs,” she said.

Cox said that the departments selected for the program can keep up to $2,000 for trips to places like Austin and Dallas.

“If they were economists they might want to go to the Federal Reserve Office or bank,” she said. “The provost is trying to get undergraduate student research going on the campus by making these grants to five departments.”

Any department seeking eligibility for the grant must apply by Sept. 28, Cox said. To decide which of the departments will receive the grant, a specialized committee made of representatives from every department that applies will review the applications.

The provost’s office sets aside money for the program specifically for this, Williamson said.

She said students will benefit not only from the wages they will be paid, but more importantly from an opportunity to work closely with experienced faculty members.

“It’s the faculty member’s research project and the student’s engagement together that will help to move those projects forwards,” she said. “It’s a significant opportunity for them to engage in that kind of process.”

Cox said UNT is hoping the program will grow even more next year.

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