Hub Through The Hoods

US Wealth Napolitano |

By: Thomas H. Fletcher, CFP®

In each of the past 11 years, throngs of bicycle riders have suited up in their finest spandex shorts and colorful cycling jerseys to bike through many of Boston's neighborhoods for the annual ‘Hub on Wheels’ bike ride. For a myriad of reasons, in past years I haven't ever been able to attend the event. Last Sunday however, I finally had an opportunity to jump in on the action and enjoy the ride.

Hub on Wheels is held by the City of Boston each September to encourage bicycle riding throughout the city, with entrance fees partially supporting several charities such as the Special Olympics and Boston Bikes. There are three routes originating (and ending) at City Hall including 10, 30 and 50 mile loops. After some aggressive cajoling by one of my U.S. Wealth colleagues (who has ridden over 3000 miles this year aloneon her bike), I caved in and opted for the 50 miler. The route took us through the neighborhoods of the Back Bay, up and down a closed for traffic Storrow Drive, Jamaica Plain, Roslindale, Hyde Park, Mattapan, Dorchester, and the South Boston waterfront. Like all 50 mile bike rides, this one was uphill with a stiff headwind the entire way. Ok, that may not be completely true, but it certainly felt like it most of the time. There were a couple of hills though that were definite humdingers.

I've ridden plenty of organized bike rides in the past, but what struck me the most was the sheer number of cyclists that attended the event.  I'm not good at estimating crowd sizes, but this one easily exceeded 5000. Also, I was amazed by all the various shapes and sizes of the bicycles and the riders on them. Old or young, tandems and trailers, racing or mountain, skinny or lumpy, it didn't seem to matter; everyone appeared to be having a great time. Sign me up for next year!