Awards, bike ride added to Westside Picnic July 21

       Most of the year the Organization of Westside Neighbors (OWN) tries to represent people on this side of town.
       But there's always one day - Saturday, July 21 this year - that OWN cooks for them.
       The free event is called the Westside Neighbors Picnic, and it's set for noon to 2 p.m. at the Westside Community Center, 1628 W. Bijou St., in the grassy area facing Bijou. “Connect with neighbors for a fun-filled time of entertainment, camaraderie, and food (BBQ hotdogs and beans, side dishes and soft drinks),” reads the article in the latest edition of the OWN quarterly newsletter, the Westside Story.
       OWN is the city-recognized volunteer advocacy group for the older Westside.
       The event will also feature music from John Wise and Tim Zahn and (new this year) the presentation of the OWN Spirit Awards and a community bicycle ride beforehand.
       The Spirit Awards are certificates that OWN gives to property owners who have improved residential or commercial properties within the city-defined Neighborhood Strategy Area (NSA) for the older Westside. Given out annually by OWN, the awards used to be presented in the fall (most recently last October). However, the volunteer group decided there would be more visibility in presenting them at the picnic, which usually attracts 100 or more people.
       Described as “leisurely” in the Westside Story, the bike ride will start from Vermijo Park (by the community garden) at 10:30 a.m. and follow a route including the Midland Trail and America the Beautiful Park before arriving at the picnic. Part of the route will pass the segment of trail and Fountain Creek between 25th and 27th streets that OWN has adopted in an agreement with the city.

Westside Pioneer article