The History of the
Tour De Sewer


The legend passed down to me goes like this. In the '70s and early '80s, a group of riders from Downey Cyclery would get together and ride a route that linked the riverbed bike paths of the Rio Hondo, San Gabriel and Los Angeles rivers. The riverbeds were not well maintained at that time. There was a lot of standing water and overgrowth. Rumor has it that there was a sewage treatment plant they passed. Someone dubbed it the sewer ride. The name stuck. In the middle '80s there was a big surge in bicycle fun rides. The Bell Gardens Lions Club was looking for a fund-raiser to benefit our sight charities. One of our member's, Tom Bradley, suggested the bike ride and dubbed it the Tour de Sewer. Many, many rides have come and gone since 1986, but because of the name, logo and a quality event, we still attract attention. We take great pride in putting on a quality event, and are rewarded with a large percentage of return riders each year.  

This fundraiser was established by our club to raise much needed funds for the community of Bell Gardens. Funds raised by this bicycle ride have allowed us to provide eye exams and glasses for hundreds of Bell Garden school children and set up a scholarship program for local students. We also support many other community projects benefiting Bell Gardens, such as school trips, reading programs, health fairs and contributions to programs and the city parks, holiday celebrations and donations to the Rio Hondo Boys and Girls Club.

Several of the Lions Club members ride regularly and attend other events around the county. We pay attention to any ideas that we could use to benefit the Tour de Sewer. We won’t ever be the biggest event, but we strive to give the riders the best experience possible for their money.

The Lions and Bell Gardens thank you.