Yep, David Byrne rode the Tour de Troit

While sitting at Blocktoberfest, an artsy gentlemen with white hair and a Kona Smoke walked down Lafayette.

It was David Byrne of the Talking Heads and much more. He was in town for a Sean Penn movie according to the Free Press.

The innovative musician arrived in town a few days ago and described Detroit as endlessly fascinating.

“Beyond the devastation, there’s all this stuff going on,” he said. “I’m noticing little initiatives happening all over town.”

He decided to stay another couple days and ride the Tour de Troit. He wrote about Detroit on his blog with an article titled, “Don’t Forget the Motor City.” (The title is perhaps a reference to the X song, The New World, which was perhaps a reference to Martha and the Vandellas, Dancing in the Street.)

While the blog is more than just about biking, as we understand it, we used his Wheelhouse Detroit rental bike to get around.

It’s a great city for biking. Not much traffic, and flat—apparently there were some hills but those got smoothed out to create more arable farmland. Right now the weather is gorgeous, sunny, but not too hot. There’s an event on Saturday morning called Tour De Troit; it’s a 30-mile group ride with beer at the end. It’s not a race.

3,000 folks joined this thing—they could have gotten more people but I was told the police said that without more cops they’d have to cut it off there. The ride began in the morning at the abandoned train station. Sometimes I sensed that folks here have gotten used to how things are, while we out-of-towners stare at the massive abandoned buildings with our jaws dropped.

Byrne does mention the house that MOCAD was moving around on the city streets. The police assured the Tour organizers that the cyclists had priority over the house.

Also, Wayne State University’s The South End has a great article on the Tour.

The first five miles were absolutely incredible. The shining sun, the brisk wind rushing against our faces, the daredevil feeling of speeding through an intersection under a red light – it was like nothing I’d ever experienced before. As we pedaled down Michigan Avenue through the shadows of the buildings surrounding Campus Martius, one thought kept reverberating in my mind: It’s good to be right here right now.

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