Tour de Elizabeth draws more than 800 cyclists in scenic journey through Elizabeth

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ELIZABETH, NJ — On Sunday, May 19, Groundwork Elizabeth, the Elizabeth Mayor and the city of Elizabeth hosted the 21st annual Tour de Elizabeth.

The annual recreational bicycling tour is the Sunday before Memorial Day weekend each year. Unique tour routes are redesigned each year, in order to showcase Elizabeth’s rich history, art, culture and economic opportunity. The event was the 21st tour, proving to be an overwhelming success, which drew more than 800 participants to the annual event, which began and ended at City Hall.

Each year, a bicycle committee made up of public, private and community stakeholders chooses a theme reflective of the 15-mile recreational ride. For 2024, the theme was “Riding with Heart,”
which underscores the importance of physical well-being and social consciousness. At the event, riders, sponsors and public officials were asked what “Riding with Heart” meant to them.

Jonathan Phillips, executive director at Groundwork Elizabeth and tour organizer, said he was thrilled with the turnout. “‘Riding with Heart’ means riding and embracing health, recreation and a love for the city, sharing an experience with friends and new friends made along the pathways,” said Phillips.

Mayor J. Christian Bollwage added, “As we embarked on the 15-mile journey of the Tour de Elizabeth, let’s remember, our bike pedals are powered by something greater. This year’s theme, ‘Riding with Heart,’ signifies our unity and determination that drives us forward. This yearly tradition exemplifies how our community comes together to celebrate and make a simple bike ride unforgettable.”

Councilman Carlos Torres shared his perspective. “This is my 11th year participating in the Tour de Elizabeth,” he said. “To me, ‘Riding with Heart’ means riding for a meaningful cause. Groundwork Elizabeth plays a significant role in our city and with our businesses. It’s a fantastic way to support a great organization for an important cause. This event is a wonderful way to unite with the community and see our beautiful city.”

Helmets were mandatory for all participants and bicycles and helmets were available for rental from Unlimited Biking. The presence of the Elizabeth Police Department ensured a safe and enjoyable ride for all attendees. Prior to the event, a thorough pre-run of the course was conducted to ensure road safety and readiness for cyclists.

The Tour de Elizabeth received generous support from more than 20 various organizations, including Elizabethtown Gas, the Union County Board of Commissioners, Community Access Unlimited, the Elizabeth Destination Marketing Organization, the Greater Elizabeth Chamber of Commerce, the Elizabeth Avenue Partnership, the Historic Midtown Special Improvement District, the Elizabeth Development Company and a broad, community-minded list of public and private sector sponsors and partners. Elizabethtown Gas was the 21st annual tour’s lead sponsor. The Elizabeth Police Department, Elizabeth Fire Department and Fire EMS helped keep the route secure.Early bird registrants received exclusive Tour de Elizabeth “heart-colored” red T-shirts, while all riders, regardless of when they signed up, were automatically entered into a complimentary raffle for exciting prizes, ranging from bicycles to electronics. Many also received string backpacks made possible by a grant from Union County.

A portion of the proceeds from the event contribute to non-profit Groundwork Elizabeth’s mission of improving the physical environment and promoting environmental justice. To learn more about Groundwork Elizabeth and future events, visit

Photos Courtesy of the city of Elizabeth