After Sept. 11, 2001, Americans promised to never forget and no place is that more clear in Connecticut than at the annual CT United Ride, which started in 2001 as a tribute and fund-raiser for first responders in New York City.
What started as a charity ride with 500 motorcyclists has grown each year, with 4,000 riders expected this Sunday, Sept. 7. It has been called by Gov. Dannel Malloy the largest 9/11 tribute in the state and is the largest charity motorcycle ride in New England. The ride now raises money for first responders and the United Way in Connecticut.
Race Director Fred Garrity Jr., a Trumbull resident, said the motorcade, which starts in Norwalk and ends in Bridgeport, has become a patriotic event for both spectators and motorcyclists.
“For those that lost their lives, for those that gave their lives, and for those that continue to put their lives on the line every day to protect us as a result of 9/11 — that’s why we ride,” Garrity said.
The entire route is 60 miles.
The motorcade starts 11:30 a.m. sharp Sunday, Sept. 7, at 10 Norden Place, Norwalk, heads down Route 136 to Route 33 through Westport, to Wilton Route 7, to Route 107 Georgetown, to Route 58 Redding, to Route 302 Bethel, to Newtown Route 25 through Monroe, to Main Street Trumbull, to Old Town Road, to Park Avenue in Fairfield continuing on Park Avenue through Bridgeport down to Seaside Park on the water. The motorcade is expected to arrive in Bridgeport around 1:15 p.m.
Garrity told HanRadio.com’s Coffee Break morning show last week that the event has to be seen to be believed.
“The best part is that Fairfield County comes out, probably 10,000 spectators,” Garrity said.
The Opening Ceremony 9/11 Tribute begins at 10:30 a.m. sharp on Sunday, Sept. 7 at 10 Norden Place in Norwalk.
The ceremony will feature the Pledge of Allegiance, National Anthem, the Connecticut State Firefighters Pipe and Drum Corp, a moment of silence where the Norwalk Fire rings their bell 11 times.
Motorcycle police from over a dozen Connecticut towns and cities will ensure the safety of the ride. With local town and escort police — over 25 municipal fire companies, and 35 police departments are involved in the ride.
Motorcyclists’ can register the day before the ride on Sat Sept. 6 at Captain’s Cove Seaport in Bridgeport from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; they can also register on Ride Day Sunday, Sept. 7, at 10 Norden Place in Norwalk, 8 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. The cost is $25 per each person.
For more information, visit CTUnitedRide.com