Rental bikes for residents and visitors to explore Canalside and beyond
More fun is rolling into Canalside Friday, and it's arriving on two wheels, with a few three wheelers thrown in for good measure.
"Blue Bikes at Canalside," presented by BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York, offers nearly 50 bikes at the city's new water-filled canal for individuals to pedal and explore downtown Buffalo and the waterfront.
Using "Blue Bikes" is a healthy and efficient way to navigate throughout the waterfront to any of the historical sites, restaurants and must-see attractions. All of the essentials are provided in the rental, including a helmet and bike lock.
"The time was right to bring 'Blue Bikes to Canalside,' " said Gretchen Fierle, senior vice president, marketing and communications, BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York. "With the tremendous activity taking place here in our backyard, it is our mission as the region's largest health plan to catalyze a quicker, easier and healthier transportation option when navigating and exploring the waterfront and beyond."
The program will officially launch Friday, following a news conference at 11 a.m., with remarks from BlueCross BlueShield, Canalside and elected officials.
Bikes will be available daily from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York members will receive $5 off any rental by presenting their member ID card.
"Blue Bikes" come in three different styles/sizes: adult, children, and for those seeking a little more support and little more comfort, the fun-to-ride full-sized trike. The program is open to all ages, but anyone 15 and under must wear a bike helmet. Cyclists are encouraged to share their experiences on social media through #BlueBikes.
The program is the result of an ongoing partnership between the region's largest health plan and the ever-emerging entertainment destination at Buffalo's historic waterfront. Bikes will be conveniently housed on the Aud Block which allows Canalside's 1 million-plus annual visitors to explore the surrounding area or disembark to the Outer Harbor courtesy of the recently announced Queen City Bike Ferry.
"It's never been easier to enjoy Canalside, the waterfront and downtown Buffalo from the seat of a bicycle," said Robert Gioia, Erie Canal Harbor Development Corp. chairman. "Thanks to BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York, visitors and residents alike will be able to use the 'Blue Bikes' to get an up close look at the natural beauty, architectural wonders and favorite historic places of the Queen City."
The partnership also has forged BlueCross BlueShield's "Summer Fitness at Canalside," a combination of 15 different free fitness classes taking place daily this summer. Classes begin next month and include Zumba, yoga, tai chi, Barre, Pilates, hoop dance and more. A full calendar of fitness classes can be found at canalsidebuffalo.com.