Annual Tour de Parks Bike Ride Set for Sunday, March 22, as fundraiser for The Legacy Trail

Participants may choose among 21-mile, 35-mile and 62-mile options

Riders participate in the 2019 Tour de Parks. Photo courtesy Friends of the Legacy Trail

The annual Tour de Parks bike ride is set for Sunday, March 22, the Friends of The Legacy Trail has announced.

A fundraiser for The Legacy Trail and its connectors, the ride will start and finish at the historic Venice Train Depot, which is located at 303 E. Venice Avenue in Venice, a news release explains. Participants have the options of a 21-mile, 35-mile, or 62-mile ride along The Legacy Trail and to other parts of the county, the release adds.

“The ride goes through or passes 12 parks along the route and provides a beautiful, scenic experience for cyclists of all levels,” the release points out.

The event is coordinated and staffed by Friends of The Legacy Trail, Sarasota Manatee Bicycle Club and the Sarasota County Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources Department, the release notes. Last year’s event had more than 950 riders, the release adds.

“This immensely popular ride gives cyclists an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors, get to know the cycling routes in the area, and raise funds for an important cause,” said Bud Gaunce, event director and past president of the Sarasota Manatee Bicycle Club, in the release.

This is the 10th year of the ride, the release notes.

“This year will be especially meaningful as construction begins on extension of the Trail to Payne Park in downtown

Sarasota and development of a connector to the City of North Port,” said Louis Kosiba, president of Friends of the Legacy Trail, in the release. “Riders, runners, walkers and whole neighborhoods are eagerly waiting for the work to begin.”

A rider celebrates completion of the 2019 Tour de Parks. Photo courtesy Friends of the Legacy Trail

The ride includes breakfast by First Watch and lunch by Mattison’s, the release points out.

Doctors Hospital will provide drinks and snacks as the Rest Stop Sponsor, it adds.

More information about entry fees, registration, routes, and schedules may be found on the Tour de

Parks webpage at

“Friends of The Legacy Trail, Inc. (FLT) is an all-volunteer 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in Sarasota.

FLT exists to support, promote, enhance, and protect The Legacy Trail, a Sarasota County Park, and its trail connectors now and for future generations,” the release explains. “It has nearly 1,000 individual, family, and business members.”