South Side History Bike Tour 2012


Registration Table for South Side History Bike Tour 2012


Chicago Studies highlights and creates opportunities for students in the College to study, engage with, and discover the city of Chicago.  Chicago Studies is a program of the College and the University Community Service Center in partnership with departments and programs across the University of Chicago.

Bike Tour Info

Whether biking for recreation or transportation, sticking to the same tried and true route can become a force of habit. But on Saturday, October 6, participants in the South Side History Bike Tour will take the “road less traveled” through historic neighborhoods.

Even long-time South Siders are likely to discover something new about events and people that shaped Chicago-both the city and the University. Tour guides include John W. Boyer, Dean of the College; Terry Nichols Clark, Professor in Sociology; and J. Mark Hansen, Professor of Political Science.  Co-sponsored by the Office of Sustainability recycles Bike Share Program and the Office of the Reynolds Club and Student Activities (ORCSA)Discover Chicago.

Bikers will get a first-hand look at historic Bronzeville, sneak a peek at the residence of the late Mayor Richard J. Daley, admire the rugged limestone Union Stock Yard Gate, and learn about the Settlement House movement at the Jane Addams Hull House. For those who participated in last year’s tour, the route and stops will be similar this year.

Participants, who must have their own bike and helmet, will meet at the Quad between Bartlett Dining Commons and the Regenstein Library at 10:30am. The tour covers 15 miles and takes roughly 4-5 hours.

Tour Details

 The registration table opened at 10 AM. There were to have been about 100 riders all totaled. I would estimate about 50 brave souls gathered in Bartlett Quad to hear the opening remarks and meet the folks who would serve as docents. Just before 11 AM the tour got underway and we headed over to the DuSable Museum of African-American History.

All along the way there were corkers who kept traffic at bay while we traversed intersections. The group was able to stay fairly close together despite the disparate skill levels. Lots of the riders were on borrowed bikes from ReCycles™. Some of these bikes were really awesome sturdily built working bikes painted in a bright orange color.

We stayed with the group until we reached the site of the old Chicago Coliseum. Then we took off in search of the local Native Foods Cafe. But on the way I decided it might be better to ride back to the van in Hyde Park and drive to the Native Foods Cafe in Wicker Park, so we did.

The ride back was fairly cold as the sun had ducked behind the clouds and the breakers on the surface of Lake Michigan added to the sense that winter would be here all too soon. Back in Hyde Park I had to move the van to get the bikes in (since the cars behind me when we left had moved and the new tenants were right on my bumper.).

We arrived in Wicker Park and found a space right away. We settled in to a nice hot luncheon and then went in search of Starbucks Coffee afterwards for the drive home. A good day!