If bikers have a problem with the streets being dominated by cars in Los Angeles, they at least have CicLAvia, an organized event that made its fourth run this Sunday, opening up 10 miles of car-free streets from Boyle Heights to East Hollywood.

A reported 100,000 people joined the fun”” most were cyclists, but CicLAvia also drew pedestrians, skaters and even those on strollers.

Building Healthy Communities- Boyle Heights (BHCBH), a nonprofit organization funded by the California Endowment that supports healthy living, also took advantage of the open streets. About 30 people including youth, staff, friends and family met at East L.A. Weingart YMCA to join the feeder ride organized by the BHCBH Youth Engagement Committee.

Dianna Martinez, 18, a freshman at California State University, Los Angeles, has been part of the Building Healthy Communities–Boyle Heights since last summer. As a member of the organization’s steering committee, she works to engage community members in various activities and events that promote health.

Dianna tells us about her CicLAvia experience and why this event is important to her.

BHB: How times have you participated in CicLAvia?

DM: I have only participated once–last year–that was my first time and this will be my second.

BHB: How was your first experience?

DM: It was fun. I liked it. I enjoyed it.

BHB: What about it made it enjoyable?

DM: Riding with friends and completing the 10 miles.

BHB: How did you feel after?

DM: I felt accomplished. I got home tired but I felt good.

BHB: What influences you most to participate in this event?

DM: Riding, having fun, and having something healthy to do.

BHB: How did you hear about CicLAvia?

DM: Being part of Building Healthy Communities. When I saw the first flyer, I decided to join it and ride along.

BHB: Why do you think it is important to stay fit?

DM: Because if you’re healthy, you feel right. You don’t feel tired and you feel energetic and ready to do something new.

Photos provided by Andrew Roman and Paco Retana.
*The California Endowment also funds Boyle Heights Beat.


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