Annual bike ride considered

JOHNSTOWN — Fulton County officials this week speculated whether a proposed “Women’s Revolution” bike ride two years from now going from Johnstown to Seneca Falls could become an annual event.

Gina DaBiere-Gibbs, tourism director for the Fulton Montgomery Regional Chamber of Commerce, said her agency is working with the Elizabeth Cady Stanton Hometown Association on the 2020 event.

DaBiere-Gibbs told the Board of Supervisors’ Economic Development and Environment Committee Wednesday that she and association representative Nancy Brown had a conference call with the state. She said the call was with Robin Dropkin of the state Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation to discuss logistical needs and the associated cost for the bike ride.

The bike ride is being planned to celebrate the 2020 centennial of the passage of the 19th Amendment, and is being coordinated by the association.

DaBiere-Gibbs said the event will take place in August 2020, commencing in Johnstown and concluding in Seneca Falls.

“Do you think there’s any chance that could be made an annual event?” asked county Administrative Officer Jon Stead.

DaBiere-Gibbs said the event is “open to having a route” established for future years. It could be a “do it yourself” route for bike enthusiasts, she said.

“We have to see how it goes,” the chamber official said. “I think it’s possible. It’s not out of the question.”

DaBiere-Gibbs reported the conference call was “helpful” in making a list of needs and preparing a preliminary budget for the 2020 event She said the chamber will continue to meet and assist with outreach and research for the event. She said the association should be preparing a request for proposal for a cycling event coordinator.

Continuing her monthly report:

∫ DaBiere-Gibbs said registration remains open for the Harvester cycling event Sept. 29 and 30.

“We are needing volunteers for the event,” she said.

She said help is needed that weekend along the routes and rest stops. Alpin Haus and Benjamin Moore are event sponsors, and the chamber seeks additional sponsors.

Registration, route details, amenities and additional event information are located at cycleadirondacks.com/harvester.

∫ DaBiere-Gibbs provided New York state and local tourism figures for 2017. She said the state’s tourism economy expanded in 2017 with a 4.4 percent growth in traveler spending, reaching a new high of $67.6 billion. The Capital-Saratoga Region, which includes Fulton County, increased 4.6 percent to $2.01 billion in traveler spending. Fulton County increased 4.2 percent to $58 million in 2017 traveler spending.

“The fall foliage report will start soon,” DaBiere-Gibbs said.

She said the I LOVE NY program will start its annual fall foliage report on Sept. 12, continuing through early November. The leaf report is based on brilliance, color, and rating such as “near peak” and “past peak.” Fulton County’s report will be available on the 44lakes.com/blog; and shared on social media.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at manich@leaderherald.com.