Tens of thousands of people flooded Southtown on Sunday for the city’s semi-annual Síclovía, where the roads are closed to cars and open to other people-powered means of transportation.
Attendees couldn’t have asked for better weather on Sunday to ride in the open streets and Southtown was filled with bikes, runners, dog walkers and rollerbladers. In it’s sixth installment, 50,000 people attended, a slight drop from last year’s 70,000.
Sandy Morander, president of the YMCA of Greater San Antonio, the organizer of Síclovía, said over it’s three years, Síclovía has become something that is uniquely San Antonio.
“We love to work together, we collaborate, and we communicate very well together," Morander said. "And everybody wants what’s good for this community. We’re just part of the facilitation of it, it isn’t just our event. This is a San Antonio community grassroots effort.
Last year San Antonio saw it’s obesity rate drop and a healthier populous is developing. San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro said he believes Síclovía is a major factor in generating that fitness motivation.
“There is no doubt that Síclovía has been part of establishing a fitness culture in San Antonio," Castro said. "More people are choosing to walk, or run, or cycle, (and) that’s a great thing because that’s going to lower our obesity rate and our diabetes rate.”
This was the first time Síclovía took place away from it’s usual route on Broadway Street. Most of the people along the route said it was their first time; however, Julie Lopez attended the last three and said she prefers it on the South Side.
“They both had great sessions whether it’s Zumba or other things. I think the other one had more crossfit and things of that nature but here it feels like you see a lot more people just enjoying the atmosphere and just being out.”
As for future event sites, Moreander said it has already been decided that this fall's Síclovía’s will return to Broadway and the spring session will move around the city.
“We sourced about seven different routes for this location and really want to make sure we learn what worked about today before we decide what’s next,” Moreander said.
Síclovía will now follow a schedule of its fall event in the last Sunday of September and it’s spring event on the last Sunday in March.