By Marina Andalon

A traveling roadshow focusing on electric bikes will be hosting a weekend event on the Santa Monica Pier from Dec. 2 – 4.

Santa Monica has earned a reputation as a hub for the emerging e-bike industry. The motorized bicycles function like a traditional bike but can legally go up to 20 miles per hour in California. Several stores have opened on Main Street specializing in e-bikes and the weekend event builds on the existing momentum.

The Electric Bike Expo is a way to promote the electric bike industry in the U.S., the expo is touring all over the country and hitting various cities. The expo teaches people about the technology behind the e-bikes and allows them to test various brands.

California has jumped to the 8th most bike friendly state, assessed annually by the League of American Bicyclist and they designated Santa Monica as a bike friendly community.

“The state’s bike-friendly advocacy efforts have driven this region to become the base for so many electric bike manufacturing/distributors,” said Ray Verhelst, Director of the Electric Bike Association. “Santa Monica offers a perfect location during this holiday season to reach thousands of locals and tourist from around the globe.”

People are invited to join various cycling groups like Santa Monica Spoke, California Bicycle Coalition, Bosch, the Electric Bike Expo and the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition during this event and gather information and tips on safe riding.

“For Santa Monica, biking is in the cities DNA. Currently Santa Monica is one of only three communities in LA County ranked as Silver by the League of American Bicyclist. The city and community advocates are committed to reaching gold and beyond,” said Cynthia Rose, Director of Santa Monica Spoke, and Board Member of the California Bicycle Coalition

Santa Monica has achieved a 356% growth in biking and counting which seems to be the reason why Rose will lead a group ride. There will also be a presentation by the California Bicycle Coalition and the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition.

After the presentation attendees can learn more about the specific e-bike brands being represented at the expo, like Blix, BMW, Bulls, Raleigh, Yuba, and the latest electric drive systems from Bosch and plenty more. Many of these brands are new to the U.S. and are here to be tested out on the track.

Participants are asked to come at least a half an hour early so they can get you set up with the right bike. The test track is a fully fenced track with variety and terrain to that will enable you to get a feel for each bike. The terrain offers a hill like structure, straight away, and corners to help determine the perfect e-bike for the attendees.

Tempo Bicycles will be raffling off one of their Carmel or Santa Barbara hybrid electric bicycles worth $4,000 to a lucky winner. All proceeds from the raffle will go to the local bike advocacy group, Santa Monica Spoke.

“With the improved bike specific infrastructure that’s been rapidly put into place here in Santa Monica, and is now connected to the Expo Line, and you’ve got a recipe to create the kind of mode share for bicycling in Santa Monica we see in cities like Amsterdam and Copenhagen. Add electric bicycles to the mix and choosing a bike over a car for short trips becomes the easy and fun solution,” said Charlie Gandy, Vice Chair or the California Bicycle Coalition Board of Directors.

The Electric Bike Expo will be at the Santa Monica Pier parking lot. Hours are 3 to 7 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Visit www.electricbike-expo.com/locations/santa-monica-california for more information.

marina@smdp.com

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