Out for a ride

Area residents who braved the biting wind to take a ride on the Warren portion of the Western Reserve Greenway on Saturday didn’t come back disappointed.

“There was a crowd,” said Mel Milliron of Southington, who expressed excitement at the opportunity to get more people out riding bicycles. The Warren portion opened Aug. 27.

The cyclists met in the parking lot of Warren G. Harding High School and rode southeast through the city and back. More pop-up rides will be planned in the hopes of expanding the cycling community in the city, Milliron said.

Allyson Roach of Champion was one of two women attending Saturday’s event. She said she hopes to see more women attending bicycle events in the future.

“I don’t know if women just aren’t into bicycling, but it’d be nice if there were more women out here,” she said.

Roach has been riding trails since last August, when her husband, Colin, got her a bike from Thumm’s Bicycle Shop in Warren.

“We ride a lot on the other side of the bike trail, so when we saw the opportunity to ride on this side, we jumped on it. It’s something nice for Warren,” she said. “The (resting) space is the best stopoff space on the whole 50 miles.”

Milliron said the cold fall weather didn’t faze him one bit.

“I’m sweating! You want to feel?” he joked, adding that the trick is dressing for it. Milliron was sporting a windbreaker, multiple layers of shirts, gloves, a bandanna and safety helmet.

“Always dress for the weather. Bundle, bundle, bundle,” said Zachary Svette, operations director for Trumbull County Metroparks.

Svette was there to show his support for the pop-up ride, which was also attended by Warren’s Bike to Work Committee. He also offered some helpful tips for those interested in traversing the trail: “Always carry a cellphone. Whenever you can, ride in pairs or more. It provides safety with a group and also if someone has a medical emergency (like a heart attack or a bee sting), someone is able to call for you. Simple things like that can balloon into something more serious, so it’s always good to ride with somebody else,” he said.

A Mineral Ridge man was attacked, beaten and robbed of his bicycle last month while riding along the trail. Recent efforts being made by Warren City Police to ensure the safety of the trail include a new bike patrol unit to police the trail.

“It’s good to get people on the bike trail, get more people using it to help with all the issues we’ve had here,” Svette said.