Fair Housing Past & Present Bike Tour and Lunch Discussion, Sat Sept 17th

How have struggles over racism and affordable housing shaped West Hartford in the past — and continue into the present day? Join us for a bicycle tour followed by a lunch discussion on Saturday September 17th 2022 from 10am – 12pm, beginning and ending at 616 New Park Avenue, West Hartford CT. Local historians and cyclists Tracey Wilson (author of Life in West Hartford, 2018) and Jack Dougherty (author of On The Line: How Schooling, Housing, and Civil Rights Shaped Hartford and its Suburbs, in-progress) will lead the 7-mile bike tour at casual pace of 10-11 mph, with several stops for storytelling and conversation at landmarks along our bike-friendly route. After the ride, participants will be invited for a free lunch and facilitated small-group discussions about fair housing issues in the past and present. This free event is sponsored through the cooperation of four non-profit organizations: Bike West Hartford, BiCiCo community bike shop, the Connecticut Fair Housing Center, and the Noah Webster House / West Hartford Historical Society.

Our event will begin at 10am sharp at the BiCiCo West community bike shop, 616 New Park Avenue. You can safely bike to this location on the Trout Brook Trail, or park your car in their side or back lot. Plan to arrive a few minutes early if you need to get your bike off a car rack or would like a quick safety check before we ride. Please bring a mask (or ask for one) to visit inside the BiCiCo shop or use their restrooms.

The weather looks good for Saturday morning! But if the weather turns bad, we will still have a “virtual” bike tour using computer projection inside the BiCiCo West shop. See a preview of our 7-mile route, and we’ll ride together as a group, about 10-11 mph, and wait for people who need extra time to go up the two hills on our journey.

Around 11:30am our bike ride will end at The Gastropark (located across New Park Avenue from BiCiCo West), where we’ll begin a lunch discussion about fair housing in the present day. Our friends from the CT Fair Housing Center have reserved tables and will provide free tokens to get lunch at the food trucks or indoor pub (but bring your own cash/card to purchase items from the bakery or coffee bar, which are separate businesses).