Run, Cycle or Walk to your nearest Cyclovía Event

Providence cyclists and public alike enjoy fitness and fun

Passerby visiting the Alliance tent to have her blood pressure read and learn about our new Be Well program offered from J-Fitness.PROVIDENCE  – For families that were in synagogue all day on Saturday, Sept, 14, for Yom Kippur, the following day’s Cyclovía event was certainly a change of pace. Cyclovía is an international phenomenon that reportedly began in Bogotá, Colombia and has spread to cities across the globe, including New York City, Chicago, Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami, Cambridge, Mass., and Providence. On Sunday, Sept. 15, Cyclovía Providence took place on Hope Street between Lippitt Park and Rochambeau Avenue.

Cyclovía, which translates from Spanish into English as “bike path,” is a car-free event that opens Providence streets to people so that they can walk, skate, run, bicycle, exercise and just socialize. It is supported by the Hope Street Merchants Association, of which the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island is a member, the Providence Department of Parks and Recreation and several local companies. Cyclovía was sponsored by Mayor Taveras in collaboration with the City’s Healthy Communities Office and the Providence Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission. “Cyclovía Providence [provides] an opportunity for residents from every corner of the city to come together, exercise, have fun and enjoy all that Providence has to offer,” said Mayor Taveras on the City’s website.

Project for Public Spaces, a nonprofit planning organization, has described Cyclovía as a large-scale community building exercise that facilitates social interaction and activity between people of all ages, incomes, occupations, religions and races.

Cyclovía included a farmer’s market, bicycle workshops and fitness fun for all ages. Alliance JCC fitness professionals were there to share their expertise and encourage passersby. Fitness activities included yoga on the Boulevard green, belly dancing, circuit training, a hula hoop contest for kids and BeWell information sessions. In addition, the Alliance set up a tent on Hope Street with crafts and healthy snacks.

Kara Marziali ( is Director of communications for the Jewish Alliance.