Hundreds turn out for Laurel County bicycle ride

LONDON, Ky. (WYMT) - Folks from near and far pedaled their way across Laurel County Saturday for the sixth annual Redbud Bicycle Ride.

Hundreds donned helmets and spandex Saturday, and rolled out along the scenic byways of Laurel County.

"This is the sixth year of the event. We registered over a thousand people so far. About sixty percent of those people are from out of state," said Chris Robinson, executive director of London Downtown.

Organizers say riders came from as far away as Connecticut and Wisconsin. In all, some fourteen states were represented. London business owners we talked to say the ride brings in people that normally would not get off Interstate 75 to check out downtown.

"Because of that, it gives us the opportunity to show them what a beautiful town we have. It's brought in lots of extra business that we hope they will then take back to their hometowns and come back and visit us again next year," said Kimberly Weaver, owner of Weaver's Hot Dogs in London.

"These riders are great for our community businesses, our hotels, for tourism in general," said Robinson.

Organizers say the ride brings in nearly half a million dollars to the region. Business owners say they have seen an increase in sales leading up to the big ride.

"We have been exceptionally busy over the last couple of days and we hope that that continues while they enjoy their stay here in London," said Weaver.

The Redbud Ride is such a success, organizers say, they have taken to calling Laurel County the Cycling Capitol of Kentucky.

Organizers say the Redbud Ride began as a way to bring interest in cycling to Laurel County, and has grown much larger over the years.

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