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Community partners to hold inaugural Open Streets event on Sunday, September 22


Sept. 16, 2013

For more information, please contact:

Vince Caristo, Bicycle and Pedestrian Planner, or Anna Dragovich, Senior Transportation Planner, City of Bloomington Planning Department, 812.349.3423

Community partners to hold inaugural Open Streets event on Sunday, September 22

Bloomington, Ind. - The City of Bloomington Planning Department has been working in conjunction with the Monroe County Planning Department and the Center for Sustainable Living to organize an Open Streets event. Bloomington Open Streets is a free public outdoor active recreation event scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 22 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on W. Kirkwood from Rogers Street to College Avenue. During this unique inaugural event, W. Kirkwood will be transformed into a giant street park as the road is temporarily closed to automobile traffic. People will have the chance to rock climb, do yoga, bike, walk, jog or complete other activities in the street. The free event will also include interactive activities, music, friends and neighbors and is family-friendly for all ages.

Participants making their way through the street will have the opportunity to sample free exercise demo classes and activities located along the route. The atmosphere will be fun and festive with music and performances animating the re-imagined public space.

The goals of Open Streets Bloomington are to:

● Allow residents to explore their own streets from a different, more intimate perspective

● Create an accessible, family-friendly avenue for residents to visit local businesses

● Encourage residents to be more physically active and provides them the opportunity

to take part in and try new types of exercise.

● Inspires participants to imagine the possibilities for the City's future.

"We're providing community members a very special opportunity to play on W. Kirkwood in a way that's normally off-limits to them. The road will be set aside just for people, it's going to be a blast!" said Vince Caristo, a co-organizer of the Open Streets event.

Event organizers aim to bring the Open Streets events to other parts of Bloomington and Monroe County. Bloomington Open Streets joins an international movement of these types of events. Currently, there are over 80 events across the U.S., in cities including Indianapolis, Evansville, Chicago and San Francisco. These cities are among the hundreds of cities worldwide that have established ongoing and highly successful events. The expansion of these events to the U.S. is largely credited to Ciclovía, a weekly event in Bogotá, Columbia that opens over 70 miles of streets to citizens. Incredibly successful, this event began in the mid-1970's and continues today, attracting up to 2 million people.

Open Streets would like to thank those businesses or organizations that have supported this initial event: The Bloomington Bicycle Club, IU-Health Bloomington, Vibe Yoga, Bloom Magazine, WFHB, and Kroger.

More information about the event can be found online at:

Questions and information requests can be sent via email to Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator, Vince Caristo at or Senior Transportation Planner, Anna Dragovich at, or by calling 812.349.3423.

Open Streets Minneapolis, 2012

Minneapolis, MN

Credit: Bethany Heemeyer