April Showers bring May flowers and bicycling. May is National Bike Month, sponsored by the League of American Bicyclists and celebrated in communities from coast to coast. Established in 1956, National Bike Month is a chance to showcase the many benefits of bicycling — and encourage more folks to give biking a try especially in Port Aransas where our community is very bike friendly.
Social rides, family friendly rides are a great way to make friends and explore Port Aransas especially riding the Farley Planter Self Guided Tour. Pick up your tour guide at the Port Aransas Chamber of Commerce in May and throughout the summer at 403 W. Cotter and learn about our native plants and Port A history. Port Aransas artist Flint Reed used a model made by Jo Leta Gavit to design the planters. The planters can be seen in front of businesses. All are decorated in some manner, some much more flamboyantly than others. The Chamber of Commerce has a Farley boat displayed right outside the front door.
About 6.5 feet long and 2.5 feet wide, they weigh about 1,800 pounds. The outside has a textured wood grain look. The Farley boat name is on both sides, and Port Aransas, Texas, is on the transom. Two planting areas are inside the boats.
This tour is a combination of historical significance and eco-tourism showing off the native plants that can be grown on Mustang Island. There are 28 planters on tour with 20 planters featuring native plants. In truth over seven hundred species of flowering plants grow on Texas beaches and islands. This tour only touches the dirt surface by showing an amazing variety of native plants. Native Plants are essential to our ecosystem survival and for many butterflies, birds and insects to live.
While you are out touring wear brightly colored clothes and reflective gear and practice safe riding. Look and listen for traffic, remember just because you can see a driver doesn’t mean the driver sees you. While riding never use a cell phone or headphones. Keep both hands on the handlebars, except when signaling. Look left, right, left, and behind you for traffic, including pedestrians, bicycles, and cars. When riding in the street ride single file and in the same direction as cars. Ride to the right side of the road, follow all traffic signs, signals, and lane markings. Ride in a straight line, not in and out of cars. Use hand signals.
Check out the map and as you are riding and visiting the Farley Boat Planters take a picture and post your picture on our Facebook page Port Aransas Garden Club. Enjoy biking … we hope to see you this summer in Port A on your bicycle. If you can’t bring your bike with you there are several bike places in Port Aransas where you can rent a bike.