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Montrealers ride to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Tour la Nuit

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In Jeanne-Mance Park and around the island of Montreal, it was all bicycles on Friday as cyclists embarked on a 24-kilometre ride to the Tour la Nuit.

The event, along with the Tour de l'Île on Sunday, is part of the Go Vélo Montréal festival, which offers a week of cycling and activities for everyone. Jean-Francois Rheault, CEO of Vélo Québec, was proud to celebrate 25 years of bringing the people of Montreal together while lighting up the streets.

“An event like the Tour de la Nuit or the Tour de la Nuit is unique. It's something you have to experience once in your life. It's something that cyclists of all levels can do. It's easy to do and ride,” said Rheault.

“It's probably my third time. I'm not necessarily from Montreal, but I love visiting Montreal, especially for events like this,” said one cyclist.

The program began at 6 p.m. with food trucks, festivities and entertainment. At around 8:30 p.m., the journey began from the streets of southwest Montreal to along the Lachine Canal.

“It’s fun to see everyone else from the community, everyone from our city,” said one participant.

“You don't have to buy an expensive bike. It's a way to just get out and enjoy nature and being outdoors,” said another.

In a press release, Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante noted: “These unique moments when the bicycle is king allow Montrealers to get around and see their city with different eyes. The Tour la Nuit and the Tour de l'Île are an opportunity for some people to discover the joy of cycling in the city.”

“There are so many polarizing issues today, so I think this is something that everyone can share. No one can be against a cycling event,” one cyclist told CityNews.

On Sunday, Montrealers have two route options for participating in this year's Tour de l'Île:

The regular route, which leaves Jeanne-Mance Park at 9:15 a.m., heads southwest. In addition to the classic 50 kilometers, there is the option of opting for a shortened 28-kilometer route.

Enthusiasts can also opt for a longer Discovery Route, which starts at 7 a.m. The two circuits of this route – 68 kilometers and 96 kilometers – run on marked lanes that are open to car traffic.