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Ride Report – Oberstar 100 – Sept. 1st, 2002(20 posts)

Ride Report – Oberstar 100 – Sept. 1st, 2002Scot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 8:24 PM
I rode my first century last Sunday. It was an organized ride in the twin cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul put together for Congressman Jim Oberstar. Jim Oberstar is a member of the US Congress and is the biggest advocate for bicycling on Capital Hill. The congressman is an avid biker, however, this was also the congressman's first century ride at the age of 67.

The first 40 miles of the century were across suburban county roads. The last 60 were through urban streets and trails of Minneapolis and St. Paul. The Century route took us all over the cities. We visited 10 different bicycle trails and facilities built with the aid of federal transportation dollars. As a native of the area I'd ridden most of them, but seeing them all in one day on a single ride gave me an appreciation of the things my town has accomplished to help the biking community.
Here's the route:
Oberstar 100 – The StartScot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 8:28 PM
We started at Penn Cycle, one of our local bike shops. Here we are at the start. The man in the InterBike is Congressman Oberstar.
The Early Miles:Scot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 8:39 PM
We were a group of about 50 riders. The self-organizing speed groups hadn't started developing yet. Here's the group coming down the path from the bike bridge over the Minnesota River.
Minneapolis Major Taylor Cycling ClubScot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 8:47 PM
Members of the Minneapolis chapter of the Major Taylor Cycling Club at the 2nd rest stop. Advocacy groups, bike clubs, government, and non-government cycling organizations were well represented on the ride. It was fun to be around so many people who work every day to encourage bike use.
Mississippi River TrailScot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 8:51 PM
Here's the group making our way up the Mississippi River.
Midtown Greenway:Scot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 8:56 PM
This is one of the bicycle assets that was partly paid for using federal transportation dollars that Congressman Oberstar helped to make possible. It was an abandoned urban railway that cut across the south side of Minneapolis. The railroad bed is 30 feet below street level, the bridge ahead is at street level and the wall to the right is a retaining wall, and the white line to the left is a dedicated pedestrian path.
Cedar Lake Bike TrailScot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 9:01 PM
Another of the twin cities bike assets. The Oberstar riders are biking on the dedicated northeast bound path, you can see the southwest bound path across the median to the right of the photo, and the dedicated 2-way pedestrian path to the left of the photo.
St. Anthony FallsScot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 9:05 PM
The power of these falls was captured to create a milling industry to process the Midwest's agricultural resources. That's why there's a city here, this is the birthplace of Minneapolis.
Gary SjoquistScot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 9:10 PM
Gary was the principle organizer of the Oberstar 100. Read about his work here:
The FinishScot_Gore
Sep 7, 2002 9:15 PM
It was a great first century. I enjoyed it and felt great the whole time. After a day of riding together the group had gotten pretty comfortable with each other. A fast paceline developed for the last 20 miles. It spit me out the back around the 90 mile mark. That group stayed dry, the rest of us ended the ride in a thunderstorm. The rain was the only down side to the entire experience. Here's the congressman at the end of his first century. (sorry about the quality, it was dark & wet)
This is a paid political advertisment by Cyclists for. . .js5280
Sep 8, 2002 10:03 AM
Jim Oberstar. Any Al's or Tipper's in your family there Scot? ;-)

Nice shots, I like the map insert. Never been to Minnesota, by hey, can't be all bad since Jeese Ventura was elected governor. Congrats on your first century!
Paid?? woohoo !!! JS I'll be waiting for my check : )Scot_Gore
Sep 8, 2002 2:57 PM
Thanks JS

As near as I can figure it, my closest common relative with Al died in 1734. So, you and I may be as closely related.

Regardless of party affiliation it's not too hard to support Oberstar if you ride a bike. His record on bicyling is pretty impressive. If you have any bridges built with federal money in your area in the last ten years there's likely a bike bridge or lane attached to it. You can thank Jim for that.

BTW: We're done with Jesse, let me know your address and we'll forward him along shortly : )

Sep 9, 2002 10:53 AM
Here's the address. . .
Here's the address. . .js5280
Sep 9, 2002 10:53 AM
1600 Pennslyvania Ave., Washinton DC 20500 :-)

I really like Jeese for his libertarian leanings and showing that a third party can win and govern. I wish I knew more about his time in office there, don't seem to have any MN contacts lately to get the inside scoop. From what I've heard though, I'm pretty sure he's not going to get back into politics or is he?

Re: Oberstar, it is nice to see a politican giving cyclists a nod and actually participate in way that shows some actual commitment instead of meaningless campaign promises.
Jesse "the Gov" VenturaScot_Gore
Sep 9, 2002 12:37 PM
In fairness, he's not been the worst governor we ever had. He hired good staff, pursued his agenda without compromising to business or special interest and gave us a tax rebate.

Your perception of him as liberation is correct, he's liberation to the extreme. Example: He proposed opening the car pool lanes on the western side of the city to all vehicles because he didn't like seeing the wasted capacity on his commute in. When asked about opening the car pool lanes on the south side of the city as well, he had no opinion because he only commutes from the west. Since he wasn't personally effected by the southside car pool lanes he saw reason to have a position on their merit, good or bad.

Also: Last Years Tax Rebate = This Years State Deficit
funny how these things work out :)
Great pics! Congrats on completing your first! nmempacher6seat
Sep 7, 2002 9:49 PM
re: Ride Report – Oberstar 100 – Sept. 1st, 2002fbg111
Sep 8, 2002 2:04 AM
Cool thanx for the post. So how fast did Oberstar ride the century?
Not SureScot_Gore
Sep 8, 2002 4:55 AM
This wasn't a typical century. Most routes are over open low travelled ground, not this one. The last 60 miles was through the heart of both cities. We were dealing with lights and traffic for most of the distance. Congressman Oberstar stopped for a press conference mid ride. Total time including breaks was around 9 hours. What I can be sure of is he's a strong rider. He maintained a steady fast pace while on bike and was in great condition at the end.

Thanks for sharing and CONGRATS on your first century!jtferraro
Sep 8, 2002 5:36 AM
Very cool picsfiltersweep
Sep 8, 2002 6:09 AM a fellow Minneapolitan- it is fun seeing all the familiar sites