Once again, people from across the Houston area flocked to Alvin to take part in the annual Tour de Braz bike ride. Foreboding weather forecasts couldn’t keep determined cyclists away, and the gamble paid off. Though cloudy, the riders stayed dry into the afternoon and beat the storms that television stations ominously displayed in the morning making their way from Austin and San Antonio. Organizers of the race canceled the 100-mile route of the ride for fears that riders could become caught in inclement weather. However, it wasn’t until after 4 p.m. that heavy rain started to fall on Alvin. 

All types of riders, young and old, could be seen, from individuals to teams sponsored by major corporations as they departed from Alvin Community College and made their way through the Brazoria County countryside, passing through the small towns of Danbury and Liverpool. 

Shela Jordan of Manvel rode in the Tour de Braz for the first time on Saturday. 

Though she has lived in the area for years, she said the ride brought her on roads she had never seen before. 

“A lot of the roads that we went down were all brand new to us,” Jordan said. 

The ride gave residents of neighboring cities a chance to see Alvin in a new light. Friends Ewelina Penney and Magda Williams are originally from Poland but met each other after both had moved to the Houston area. 

Penney lives in League City and Williams lives in Friendswood. Despite being just a stone’s throw away, they said the Tour de Braz brought them through parts of Alvin they had never seen before. 

“We like to go to Brazos Bend State Park, so we drive through Alvin very often but it never occurred to us to stop and explore, but it’s charming. I love exploring new surroundings,” Penney said. 

Penney and Williams have been riding for less than a year but are gearing up for their first BP MS 150 on April 27. They also participated in February’s Pedaling the Prairie in Hempstead and the Texas Independence Bike Tour held in Deer Park in February. 

Many cyclists use these rides, including the Tour de Braz, as practice for the annual two-day, 150-mile ride from Houston to Austin. 

The Tour de Braz is a BP MS 150 recommended ride. 

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