2010-05-26 / Features

Children’s Bike Race Draws Tots, Pre-Teens

Former City Council Speaker Peter Vallone Sr. (l.), and City Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. (r.) pose with one of the winners of the Astoria Civic Association 30th annual novice children’s bike race May 16. This year’s event was held in memory of Julian Wager. Former City Council Speaker Peter Vallone Sr. (l.), and City Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. (r.) pose with one of the winners of the Astoria Civic Association 30th annual novice children’s bike race May 16. This year’s event was held in memory of Julian Wager. Hundreds turned out for one of the city’s oldest and longest running children’s bike races on Sunday, May 16, organized by the Astoria Civic Association and hosted by City Councilmember Peter F. Vallone Jr. and his father, former Council Speaker Peter F. Vallone Sr.

More than 200 kids, ages 3 to 11, competed in separate races along the Astoria Park waterfront. The youngest group, riding tricycles and training wheel-equipped two-wheelers, kicked off the race on Shore Boulevard between Ditmars Boulevard and Astoria Park South. The top five finishers in each age group received a trophy and all participants received a medal and tee shirt for their efforts.

At the finish line, Vallone Jr. passed out trophies and posed for photos with the winners. Vallone Sr. spent the morning on the microphone, announcing winners and encouraging all participants.

“This is a wonderful community event that combines exercise, competition and fun, all things we want to encourage among our children,” Vallone Jr. said. “If we can instill a love of bike riding and outdoor activities in general in our youngest residents, then we ensure an active, healthy and vibrant New York for years to come.”

Astoria Civic Association members and volunteers spent weeks organizing the event and on Sunday morning attended to participants and their parents.

The Astoria Civic Association is one of the oldest and most prestigious civic associations in Queens. It was originally conceived by a group of concerned Astoria residents in 1928 and formally chartered by the state of New York on Oct. 9, 1933, under the leadership of the late Judge Charles J. Vallone, its first executive chairman.

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