UPDATE: Turn-by-turn route sheets and GPS files have arrived! Get the goods here.
Tour de Laemmle begins at 7am on Sunday, July 24th at the Monica Film Center in Santa Monica. TDL 2016 is a 132 mile group ride that visits all nine Laemmle Theatre locations. Amenities include several food and beverage pit stops, minor repair services, post-ride party, a gift for all 132-mile finishers, and all the popcorn you can eat! We take riders on a powerful culture and historical journey through the heart of our region. Never mind the interstate — the TDL route illustrates how L.A.’s diverse neighborhoods are connected via older roadways, railway right of passages and modern bike paths. Our journey is awash in geographic and architectural landmarks, not to mention good eats.
LEG 1 – Monica Film Center to Claremont 5 • 53 miles
We depart bright ‘n early from Laemmle’s new Monica Film Center in Santa Monica on 2nd Street. Sunday morning is a great time to ride normally busy city streets. So we’ll “take the lane” as we ride Santa Monica Blvd. past our Royal Theatre in West L.A. After rolling through Century City, we’ll turn toward downtown via Wilshire Boulevard. Soon, we will encounter two Laemmle theatres – the Music Hall and Ahrya Fine Arts in Beverly Hills. Our Wilshire Blvd. tour continues with iconic landmark buildings like Johnnie’s Coffee Shop, LACMA, The Wiltern, Wilshire Boulevard Temple and Bullock’s Wilshire. After passing through downtown and crossing over the LA River, we continue East on Whittier Boulevard, the “Main Street” of East LA.
After our first pit stop at Ruben Salazar Park, we continue through Montebello until we get to the Rio Hondo. We then leave surface streets for some bike path riding on the Rio Hondo and San Gabriel River Bike Paths. We then continue back onto streets for a moderate climb up to Mount San Antonio College before reaching our second pit stop.
Leg #1 culminates as we descend past Cal Poly Pomona and ride the flats through Pomona and La Verne into Claremont. There will be food at the theatre, but you can also take a longer break to enjoy restaurants like Le Pain Quotidien, I Love Pie Bakeshop and many others. Metrolink trains will be running on Sunday for those who want to leave (or join) the ride in Claremont.
LEG 2 – Claremont 5 to Playhouse 7 (Pasadena) • 33 miles
At 33 miles, Leg #2 is the second longest. It starts as we leave Claremont riding west on beautiful Bonita Avenue. After passing through La Verne and San Dimas, we continue West on Gladstone Street, before turning North to get onto Route 66 and have the chance to sugar up at The Donut Man in Glendora. We then continue into Azusa where we will have a pit stop at the newly opened downtown Azusa Gold Line Station.
The Azusa stop is a great opportunity to bail out if you’re pooped. Otherwise, continue on as we hit the upper stretch of the San Gabriel River Trail and then down into the Santa Fe Dam Recreation Area. Enjoy the view as your roll along the top of the dam. After a short stretch on some “industrial” streets, we get to enjoy a long stretch on residential Longden Avenue through El Monte, Arcadia, Temple City, Rosemead and San Gabriel. Then up through San Marino, past Cal Tech in Pasadena, and on to the Playhouse 7 Theatre. Grab a bite at La Zona Rosa Caffe or Blaze Pizza. And if you need to hop off the ride here, we are just blocks from the Lake Street Station of the Gold Line.
LEG 3 – Playhouse 7 to NoHo 7 (North Hollywood) • 16 miles
Who says you need a car to be the “terror of Colorado Boulevard.” We’ll take the right lane as we ride Colorado Boulevard toward Old Pasadena and continue across the historic 100 year-old Colorado Street Bridge. After riding through Eagle Rock, we enter Glendale and make our way to the corner of Wilson & Maryland, site of the upcoming Laemmle Lofts mixed use development. After a quick photo-op, we continue through Glendale and into Burbank. We then get to ride the Chandler Bike Path into the North Hollywood Arts District and the NoHo 7 theatre. Make sure to grab a hot dog at Vicious Dogs, or a burger or sausage at the District Pub. And note that you are just a block from the North Hollywood Metro Station.
LEG 4 – NoHo 7 to to Monica Film Center (Santa Monica) • 28 miles
For those who are riding the whole route, you get to relax on the flats for the first 10 miles of this leg as we will start out on the bike path on Chandler and then switch onto the separated Orange Line Busway Bike Path which will take us all the way to (and through) the Sepulveda Basin Recreation Area. We return to city streets at the Encino Velodrome, but traffic on Louise Avenue is minimal and we will only be on Ventura Blvd. for half a block before turning into the parking lot for the Encino Town Center Mall and the Town Center 5 theatre. Fill up on Clif Shots and gel packs at our pit stop in the mall’s main entrance between Pieology and Pinkberry.
Less than 20 miles left, but arguably the toughest leg of the ride. We start out east on Ventura Blvd., but get onto side streets as quickly as we can. Then it’s on to Sepulveda and the 2-mile climb to the top of the Sepulveda Pass. The reward for your efforts… a great descent past the Getty Center and into West LA. Then a quick jog through the grounds of the VA as we make our way to San Vicente Blvd. Then glide west toward the setting sun and ocean views courtesy of Palisades Park before returning to the Monica Film Center to complete the full circuit.
After parking your bike, head straight up to the Mezzanine Lounge for a celebratory beer and snacks. After 130+ miles, you’ve earned it!
Sound fun? Register here!