2017-08-10 / Living

Bike & share

500+ riders to hit the streets in 38th annual Assenmacher 100
BY LANIA ROCHA
810-452-2652 • lrocha@mihomepaper.com

SWARTZ CREEK – Linda Russell recalls watching the Assenmacher 100 bicyclists pedal past her house for years before she and her husband decided their family should give it a go.

“My husband and I each had a child on the bike with a baby seat, and our 8-year-old daughter (rode) her own bike,” said Russell. “It was a fun way to spend the day with our children.”

Those kids are now grown with kids of their own, and the long tradition of the Assenmacher 100 is still going strong, with the 38th annual ride coming up Sunday, Aug. 20.

Matt Assenmacher, event founder and owner of Assenmacher’s Cycling Center, said he expects more than 500 bicyclists to converge on the city and hit the streets.

“There will be some subtle changes in the routes from last year,” said Assenmacher. “We’re just nipping and tucking a little bit.”

Although he plans to close his Swartz Creek shop this fall, and consolidate operations in his Hill Road store, Assenmacher said he intends to continue the ride annually in Swartz Creek.

“We love Swartz Creek,” he said. “We’ve been here forever. We’re happy to keep the ride going.”

Assenmacher said he will likely start future Assenmacher 100s from the high school or one of the city parks.

“I’ve spent the majority of my life here,” he said. “I’m not going to abandon Swartz Creek.”

Assenmacher has, in fact, had his shoulder to the wheel the last couple of weeks as the clock ticks down to the 2017 event.

As in the past, five routes will be available. Riders can pedal for 20, 34, 56, 66 or 100 miles.

The 100-mile route will take riders through several rural outposts, parks and a four-corners or two.

“I’ve personally always liked riding through the little communities,” Assenmacher said. “In the last couple of years, we’ve gotten away from that. This year, we’re going back to it.”

The trail will go through Gaines, Byron, Bancroft, Shiatown Park on the Shiawassee River, Bennington, Laingsburg and Lennon.

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