Will the first CicLAvia in San Pedro and Wilmington be a boon for businesses?

Bicycle riders participate in CicLAvia in Venice, California in 2013.
Bicycle riders participate in CicLAvia in Venice, California in 2013.
Eric Chan / Flickr Creative Commons

For the first time, CicLAvia will roll through San Pedro and Wilmington — and businesses along the route are getting ready. On Sunday, August 13, the harbor communities will play home to scores of bicyclists.

Dozens of restaurants, cafes, bars and breweries line the route.

Jim Frelkin, a lifelong resident of the area and managing partner of Slavko's Harbor Poultry, thinks the long-term effects of CicLAvia will be a net positive.

"I think that this bicycle, whatever it is, it might be inconvenient, it might be a big day, I don't know. But I do know that it's going to bring a lot of extra people to to show em our downtown area. And I think that's good," he tells KPCC.

Frelkin likens it to San Pedro's annual Holiday Parade. Held in December, it gives local businesses a boost, he says.

Christopher Kirkland, the assistant store manager of Big Nick's Pizza, tells KPCC, "I think it should be a good turnout for everybody... especially for small businesses like us. We're a mom and pop shop. We're not mainstream or anything like Papa John's or Domino's so every time we get new people rolling by like that in such big groups we actually do get usually a really good turnout from the random customers that live far away."

Kirkland says the only downside he can foresee is that it might take longer to deliver pizza on Sundays since several local bridges and roads will be closed. But he described Big Nick's customers as "very understanding" about community events.

The 7-mile route starts at Banning Park on the northern end and heads past the Wilmington Waterfront and the Port of L.A. before ending at the Pacific Avenue hub on its southern tip. 

Tafarai Bayne, chief strategist with CicLAvia, says "Typically it's not very bikeable between these neighborhoods, the way these streets are designed. So it'll be one of the few opportunities to safely ride between the communities and to hang out along this stretch."

You don't have to ride the entire distance. You can join CicLAvia at any point along its route and go for as long or as little as you like. You can also can ride in either direction.

Another bonus: You can borrow a free bike for the day from any of the city bikeshare stations in the vicinity.

The San Pedro Meets Wilmington CicLAvia kicks off on Sunday at 9 a.m. and ends at 4 p.m. Street closures will start at 8 a.m. and stay in effect until around 5 p.m.