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Riverwest 24 Bike Race Kicks Off in Milwaukee

One-thousand bicyclists are riding on the streets of Riverwest. The ninth annual "Riverwest24" bike race is in full swing, 24 hours of biking along a nearly five mile course around the historic Milwaukee neighborhood.

"Our theme is that we want people people to participate, we want people to come out, see our neighborhood. Be part of it for 24 hours, it's kind of a commitment," said Christopher Fons, an event organizer.

Sure, they're on bikes, but Fons said it's more than just the biking and exercise.

"It's inspired by other ideas, temporary community and people coming together, teamwork, those kinds of things," Fons added.

Bicyclists who are taking part come from all parts of the area.

"I'm not from Riverwest, but last year we went to schools and painted stuff and we just did a lot of different things for the community," said Jamie Sawyer, who lives in the downtown area.

Each of the 500 or so teams have a style of fashion. Capes are what Sawyer's team decided on. It adds to the fun of the whole thing.

The purpose is to know the community and the neighbors.

"And being active in your community and talking to people and 24 hours is a real test in a lot of ways of how you interact with your group, with your team, and people all around here," Fons said.

This bike race happens solely from the entrance fees, there's no sponsorship, and the money goes right back in to the Riverwest community. The bike race goes until 7 p.m. Saturday evening.

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