Over 500 participants with OK Freewheel set up camp on Saturday, June 9, in Elk City’s beautiful, Ackley Park then headed out on Sunday, June 10 for a week-long trip across Oklahoma.
OK Freewheel is Oklahoma’s premier bicycle touring event. Each year a route is selected and this year’s route stretched from the Texas state line to Joplin MO along historic Route 66 and Elk City was honored to be the kickoff point for this year’s event.
Freewheel was founded in 1979 as a 501(c)4 organization led by a volunteer Board of Directors and part-time Executive Director. Its articles of incorporation state that its purposes are to “foster and promote amateur bicycle touring; emphasize the benefits of exercise for fitness and health; and promote community spirit, civic image and betterment of the social welfare of Tulsa and the surrounding communities.”
For over thirty years, Freewheel has been Oklahoma’s only cross-state cycling touring event. Beginning in 1979, the ride was underwritten by the Tulsa World newspaper. The paper’s sponsorship of Freewheel ended in the early 1990’s. Since then, rider fees and in-kind support from many vendors and volunteers have been the ride’s only funding sources.
The City of Elk City along with the Elk City Fire Department welcomed over 1200 people for the FREE Family Fun Event in Ackley Park on June 9th. There was live music, food trucks and FREE Community S'mores Outdoors! Plus, families enjoyed Ackley Park activities that included the Centennial Carousel, Choctaw Mini Train, Putt Putt Golf, and Elk City Aquatic Center. The Family Friendly atmosphere made this event a success for the City of Elk City.