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  • Thu July 10 2008
  • Posted Jul 10, 2008
Bicycle, Blues & BBQ Festival, the fourth annual celebration of good food, good music and cycling, gets under way Friday night at Clear Lake’s City Park. A variety of barbecue vendors will be set up in the park around 5:30 p.m., according to Casey Martin, one of the organizers. Music begins at 7 p.m., featuring the award-winning band Blind Lemon Hayden. Fronted by Mason City native Phil Dunlap, the seven-piece band features horns, piano, bass and guitar. The band members are all professional musicians in the St. Louis, Mo., area. They have played at Bicycle, Blues & BBQ since its inception, and most recently played the Iowa City Jazz Festival. Music will continue until 10:30 p.m. Saturday morning’s events begin with a family fun ride. Registration is at 7 a.m. in City Park for the three routes: “Baby-Back,” a light 14-mile ride around the lake; the “Country Style,” a 42-mile ride, and “The Cajun,” a 70-mile bike ride for those wanting more “spice” in their ride. Registration fees are $15 for individuals and $25 for families. Barbecue vendors will be set up in the park all day Saturday. The music begins at 1 p.m., with the Iowa-based blues group the BillyLee Janey Trio. Guitarist BillyLee Janey has been compared to such greats as Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimi Hendrix, and has been inducted into the Iowa Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The new Iowa Cup Series Criterium Race gets under way at 2 p.m. in downtown Clear Lake. The multi-lap race over a one-mile course is ideal for spectators, according to Martin. It is open to riders of all experience levels. The race, which will feature 10 categories, will continue throughout the day. At 7:30 p.m. the Clear Lake Municipal Band featuring vocal soloist Deb Hild of Clear Lake will perform special blues music during its regular performance. On Sunday morning, the Iowa Cup Series Road Race kicks off at 9 a.m. from the Surf Ballroom parking lot. It runs through the North Iowa countryside and finishes on the south side of Clear Lake. Registration is at 7:30 a.m., and riders will be staged by 8:30 a.m. Both Saturday’s Criterium and Sunday’s Road Race are United States Cycling Federation (USCF)-sanctioned events. Proceeds from the weekend go to Cerro Gordo Recreational Trails, a non-profit group formed in 2000 to build public biking trails. Martin said the organization has raised between $600,000 and $800,000 for trails. A stretch around Ventura was recently completed. Sponsors of the event include Martin, Cooney, MacNider and Cooney, Financial Consultants of Raymond James and Associates Inc.; Dean Snyder Construction; Henkel Construction Co.; Heartland Asphalt Inc.; North Iowa Spin; Budweiser; Daniel Burgmeier DDS; CLTel; Kingland Systems; Manufacturers Bank & Trust; and Wayne’s Ski, Cycling and Fitness. For more information, visit www.bicyclebluesbbq.com.

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