City News Blog


The latest happenings in your city government.

STIHL Tour des Trees Coming Through Lakeland in October
Now accepting applications for Riders!

The STIHL Tour des Trees is a week-long, 500-mile cycling tour with an ambitious agenda:

  • To fund important research focused on improving the health of urban trees
  • To fund education programs aimed at connecting young people with the environment and with opportunities in the green industry
  • To raise awareness in the communities we visit of the importance of trees to the quality of urban life and the value of science-based professional tree care.
  • To engage and educate young people about how trees grow, why people need trees and how they can help care for the trees in their lives.
  • Every full-Tour participant commits to raising a minimum of $3,500 for the TREE Fund in addition to pedaling 500+ miles in a week, rain or shine. They do it for the challenge, the mission and the camaraderie. Their legacy is a promise of strong, healthy urban trees for generations to come.

The Tour is the principal fundraiser for the TREE Fund (last year’s ride raised $625,000+) with an environmental outreach component built in. Our goal is to engage the communities we visit, share our love for trees and cycling and leave something of value behind. Usually that’s a tree (or trees) that we plant on site (after consultation with your Parks or Forestry Dept.) and a donation of a set of children’s books about trees to your local library and/or elementary school. Our events are professionally promoted to the local media, and we try to enlist as many local participants as possible.

For full details visit:


Critical Mass, a gathering of bicyclists and skateboarders, will take place Friday at Munn Park in Lakeland.

It is the first of what are planned to be regular rides held the final Friday of each month. Critical Mass, which originated in San Francisco and has spread to cities throughout the world, brings attention to cycling and other forms of transportation as alternatives to driving.

Participants will gather at 5:30 p.m. and begin their ride at 6 p.m. Helmets are recommended. Maps of the ride route will be shared before the ride begins.
*copy courtesy of @theledger





LAKELAND, FL (April 15, 2014) -  Red Trail Racing of Lakeland will host the City Challenge Urban Mountain Bike Race in downtown Lakeland on Saturday, April 19, 2014 from 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.  The registration and head table for the event will be in front of City Hall on Lemon Street.  Registration for the event will start at 5 p.m. with a practice session starting at 6 p.m. before the racing starts around 6:30 p.m.


Ray Wells, promoter of the event said, “I’m excited and we have almost 150 racers that will be participating in this very unique urban mountain bike format.  In fact, I am not aware of any other urban mountain bike race in the nation and we started it all right here in Lakeland.” 


The urban criterium is a mountain bike race on asphalt and stairs that winds through the Iowa Street Parking garage and along Lemon Street in front of City Hall.  Spectators are admitted free and can view the outlined course along Iowa Street and the Iowa Street Garage from designated positions.  


The Iowa Avenue Parking Garage will be closed because it is part of the race course. The portion of Iowa Avenue between Lakeland’s City Hall and Lakeland Electric will be closed and a portion of Lemon Street will be closed for through traffic at Massachusetts Avenue.


Wells said, “This year we’ve added a cyclocross event where participants race their bike on the course backwards having to carry their bikes up the many stairs in the course instead of riding down them.”  


Visit for more information and to register for the Lakeland Urban Mountain Bike Race .




Wednesday October 23rd
7:00 pm
Florida Southern College, Branscomb 201

A panel of law enforcement officers who also enjoying riding bicycles in their free time will talk about the Florida laws as they pertain to bicyclists. Topics will include:

• Come join your fellow bicyclist to hear the answers to such questions as “What does “3 feet to pass” mean?

• Do I really need to come to a full and complete stop at a intersection if no one else is around?

• What happens if there are no sensors to pick up a bicycle at a stop light? Do I have to wait until a car comes to activate the light?

The panel will take questions from the audience.