No, there was no rain when Bikes on Rice was scheduled to start Tuesday from the Lihu‘e Civic Center Mo‘ikeha Building parking lot.
“It was raining when we left home,” said Lora Petrak. “But it’s not raining now. We can always see what’s for dinner if no one comes.”
Jim Benkert, one of the leaders of Bikes on Rice, showed up to see if anyone turned out for the event organizers had called off due to the inclement weather.
“Tommy Noyes said they weren’t planning on coming in,” Benkert said. “I just had to make sure in the event people show up.”
Lora and her husband Dan rolled up and interrupted Benkert’s plans of just leaving after no one showed up. Then, Pat White and Diane Nitta rolled in.
“I came all the way in to ride with Pat,” said Nitta, a resident of Kekaha. “We ride together a lot. We even rode out to Polihale, from Kekaha, naturally.”
The group quickly formulated plans for a leisurely ride around the Timbers Resort and silently rode off, taking advantage of the small window of daylight before the sun dropped behind the mountains.
Bikes on Rice takes place on the second Tuesday of each month except December. These are safe, slow-paced, fun rides through the surrounding neighborhood of Lihu‘e, and designed for all ages and abilities.
“No one gets left behind,” said Tommy Noyes, one of the leaders.
During this time of global and local uncertainty because of the COVID-19 virus, there are some format changes, according to the event website.
There will no longer be an individual checking in and registering participants. Instead, participants need to sign a waiver that is good for the year. Also, the participant needs to write down an email address for future communications.
Bikes leaders and squad leaders wear face masks prior to riding, and ask that participating riders wear theirs as well. Once the ride rolls out, masks are optional.
The ride format also changes, to where smaller groups of six or less, rolling out with the squad leader, choose the route for the ride, the Tuesday group deciding they wanted to cruise through Timbers Resort.
The next ride, the final one scheduled for 2021, is scheduled for Nov. 9, starting at 4:30 p.m. in the parking lot fronting the Moikeha Building.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or email@example.com.