Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Schuylkill River Trail Bike Tour: Rails and River Towns Ride

We have an exciting event coming up in a little over a week: the Rails and River Towns Bike Ride. While we have long been active in building and promoting the Schuylkill River Trail, this is our first organized bike ride along the trail. It won't be the last. We have a series of rides planned over three years that will incorporate different parts of the trail and incorporate different historic sites.

The Rails and River Towns Ride will take place on Saturday Sept. 22. You can read about the details here.  The day will start with a presentation on the Pennsylvania Railroad, upon whose right of way the trail is partly built. Cyclists will travel 9 miles (18 miles round trip) from Pottstown's Riverfront Park to the town of Birdsboro, home to the largest producer of iron during the Revolutionary War. In Birdsboro, they can opt to take a guided walking tour to learn about the history of this former iron and steel town.. The tour features 10 historic sites, including the 1853 former St. Micheal's Episcopal Church (pictured below) that was renovated in 1854 under the supervision of noted Philadelphia architect Frank Furness.

Former St. Micheal's Episcopal Church

Mouns Jones House Photo by Walt Hug

Those wishing for a shorter ride can travel along the trail 4.5 miles to Historic Morlatton Village, in Douglassville. There, tour guides will offer information about the site's four 18th C. buildings, including the Mouns Jones House--Berks County's oldest home (pictured right). Participants who just want to ride can opt out of the walking tours and take a loop trail through Union Township's Recreation Area.

This is a unique event that combines lessons in local history with a bike ride along a beautiful section of the Schuylkill River Trail. There's still time to register! Click here for online registration.

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