More Than 3,400 Convention Goers Bike In Denver

Have trouble getting around Denver during the 2008 Democratic National Convention? Not if you're on two wheels, say conventions organizers. Organizers are providing 1,000 free bikes for residents, visitors and delegates this week to travel around town during the convention.Thousands are taking advantage of the program, according to organizers -- including the 2008 Democratic Host Committee, Boulder-based Bikes Belong Coalition, and Humana, a health insurance company."At this moment, we've had 3,373 rides going 12,701 miles," said Avery Stonich of Bikes Belong Coalition, a nonprofit group who organized the convention "freewheelin'" bike program. Anyone in Denver during the convention can rent for free a bike from one of seven bike tent stations across the city between the hours of 7 in the morning and 7 at night.Returning her free bike to the Wynkoop St. station, San Diego resident, Jeanette Lawrence, 32, said she's biking as much as she can."It's so easy to get around," said Lawrence, who came to the convention this week with her husband, a DNC volunteer working with the media.Security is extremely tight in downtown Denver. Police have set up barricades for miles near the Pepsi Center and shut down completely major roadways next to the venue. That's led some to take advantage of the free transportation.  "I've heard from people that the traffic is just so insane and it's been hard to get a cab with so many people wanting one," Stonich said. Organizers say riders from 49 states and 23 countries have taken part in the bike program. That's folded nicely with the Democrats' goal of having the "greenest" convention in history. The city of Denver is using  this week's bike program as a test run for a future city-wide rider program they're developing. But the bike program doesn't end there. On Thursday, the organizers tear down the stations and head to Minneapolis-St. Paul for the Republican convention. "We want people to get out of their cars, get onto a bike, get fit, see the sights, and feel how it feels to be fit," said Mitch Lubitz of Humana.-ABC News' Jennifer Parker

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