22nd Annual Event to Loop through Beautiful Middle Tennessee;
Registration Deadline Extended to September 1st
Nashville, TN – With less than a month away, bicycle enthusiasts across the state are encouraged to register for the Bicycle Ride Across Tennessee, slated for September 10th-17th. In its 22nd year, this year’s seven-day ride will feature a loop through some of Middle Tennessee’s most stunning landscapes.
Originating at Montgomery Bell State Park, this year’s route will feature a combination of rolling hills, valleys and some flat terrain. Cyclists can expect to experience beautiful, rural Tennessee scenery and interesting back roads along the way, including the Natchez Trace Parkway and visits to several Tennessee State Parks such as Dunbar Cave.
“Highlighting the pastures and farmland of Middle Tennessee, this year’s BRAT will not have the long climbs that were more prevalent on last year’s route,” said Ryan Forbess, director of the Bicycle Ride Across Tennessee. “In terms of effort level, the 2011 BRAT will include a balance of some long-distance rides and some shorter distance days – designed to challenge our expert cyclists, while accommodating recreational riders.”
Riders will camp overnight at four Tennessee State Parks along the route, including David Crockett, Henry Horton, Montgomery Bell and Paris Landing. The city of Clarksville will host one overnight stay at Swan Lake Park. As part of this year’s BRAT ride, one layover day is planned on September 14th at Montgomery Bell State Park, giving cyclists an opportunity to do more sightseeing – including nature hikes and canoeing. New this year is a three-day ride option for those who aren’t ready for a weeklong tour or have limited vacation time.
“While the BRAT is not a race, it is a significant ride that requires preparation,” Forbess advised. “Even experienced riders appreciate the support staff we offer along the route that can provide assistance and transportation for those who encounter problems or simply can’t complete that day’s mileage. Our goal is to provide an outstanding experience for participants of all ages.”
The event will begin with check-in at Montgomery Bell State Park starting at 1:00pm on Saturday, September 10th, followed by a rider’s meeting at 6:30pm. On Sunday, riders will be introduced to the route with a scenic 84-mile ride to David Crockett State Park.
Other details include:
- Costs for riders range from $355.00 for the full, seven-day ride to $50.00 for a single-day rider. There is a $125.00 non-rider charge for those using alternative transportation.
- All costs include accommodations and food, excluding single-day riders.
- Each registered participant will receive a commemorative 2011 BRAT T-shirt.
- Daily mileage ranges from 87 miles on the first and longest leg of the route to 52 miles on the final day.
- The early deadline fee has been extended to September 1st. There are only a few slots left for the three-day ride, with several still available for the seven-day ride.
BRAT organizers have added several exciting entertainment options to this year’s schedule of events, including several nights of live music; a wine tasting at Paris Landing State Park, hosted by Paris Winery Vineyards; and a mix-and-mingle social, hosted by the Friends Group of Henry Horton State Park. On the last night of the BRAT, which is Friday, September 16th, the city of Clarksville will host two special excursions, including trips to the Beachaven Vineyards Winery and to downtown Clarksville’s Jammin’ in the Alley festival.
“This annual ride is a unique opportunity for cyclists and one of Tennessee State Parks most time-honored events,” added Forbess. “We’ve added some great events to keep the event fresh and look forward to having a full roster of cyclists joins us for a great ride.”
The 22nd Annual Bicycle Ride Across Tennessee is sponsored by Tennessee State Parks, Whole Foods, Gran Fondo Cycles, REI, Advocate Marketing and Print, the city of Clarksville, Clif Bar, Beachaven Vineyards Winery, I Run for the Party, Swiftwick, McKee Foods, Paris Henry County Chamber of Commerce, Paris Winery Vineyard, Start 2 Finish Events, the Tennessee Department of Transportation, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and Keep Tennessee Beautiful. A portion of the event’s proceeds will benefit the Cumberland Trail Conference and the Tennessee State Park Rangers Association, both non-profit organizations.
For registration information or more details about the Bicycle Ride Across Tennessee, please visit www.thebrat.org, the main webpage at www.tnstateparks.com/BRAT or visit the Bicycle Ride Across Tennessee on Facebook. Riders with questions are encouraged to contact Ryan Forbess via e-mail at Ryan.Forbess@tn.gov.