While bicycle commuting seems like such an ecological, politically correct practice, here in the Valley, any thought of pedaling through the duress of summer is just impractical. So what better time for fair-weather environmentalists to make a point than just before the Arizona heat launches its offensive?Valley Bike Week kicks off Saturday, April 5, and runs through April 12. Police officers will conduct bike rodeos for children, teaching safety and road rules, at various locations throughout the week. (Call officer Bob Ward at 602-495-2462 for a rodeo near you.) Phoenix Municipal Stadium, 5999 East Van Buren, hosts a Bike Swap Meet on April 5 for buying, trading, and selling bikes and bike paraphernalia. Wednesday, April 9, is Bike to Work and School Day, when Valley cities promise to "recognize" residents who ride their bikes to work (with a big fat check, we hope!) - and bicycling converts can win prizes all week by registering with their employers, calling 602-262-RIDE or visiting www.valleymetro.org. On Saturday, April 12, the 12th El Tour de Phoenix biking event includes, for the first time, an inline road skate. Rollerbladers will cruise 25 miles, from Tonto National Forest to Mesa, to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. (See www.pbaa.com to register.) For more information on the week's events, call 602-262-RIDE or visit www.valleymetro.org. -- Brendan Joel Kelley
Cancer society relay goes the distance
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A race without a finish line is a fitting metaphor in the search for a cure for cancer. While the race hasn't yet been won, those who have survived the disease - and those who work diligently for a cure - run it with courage, conviction and an appreciation for life that is the most fitting metaphor of all.The race continues at the American Cancer Society's Scottsdale Relay for Life, from 5 p.m. Saturday, April 5, to 8 a.m. Sunday, April 6, at Horizon High School, 5601 East Greenway Road. Teams of all sizes will be on hand for this 15-hour walk/run, also featuring live entertainment, a catered dinner and activities for all ages. For details call 602-381-3084 or visit www.scottsdalerelay.org. -- Craig Wallach