The Township Committee at its Tuesday meeting approved the parks and recreation department's request for a special event permit to close part of South Finley Avenue and surrounding streets for the planned 20th Olde Mill Inn Tour of Basking Ridge on Labor Day, September 5.
The annual bike races, presented by the township and Liberty Cycle in downtown Basking Ridge, would require that the roads be closed between 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. that day to present the line up of races, including a children's race.
The Township Committee has been asked to grant a permit to temporarily close South Finley Avenue between Collyer Lane and Henry Street; and Henry Street to Rankin Avenue, continuing to Cedar Street, Dyckman Place and Colonial Drive to South Finley during the event.
The Olde Mill Inn Tour of Basking Ridge, started in 1992, is coming up on 20 years on September 5, said Greg Cordasco, co-owner of the Liberty Cycle bike shop.
"It is now the second longest running bicycle race in New Jersey,second only to the longest running bicycle race in the country,The Tour of Somerville," Cordasco said.
He said the charted loop course starts and finishes at Lewis Street in downtown Basking Ridge, heading north on South Finley, left on Henry Street, left on Rankin, right on Cedar — sweeping left on Dyckman — then left on Colonial and left on South Finley to the start/finish line at Lewis Street and South Finley.
The loop through downtown Basking Ridge is described as one of the best courses in the country, according to Cordasco.
"It does not favor a sprinter or a climber but rather an all-around fit rider. The list of previous winners of the race is a who's who in the sport of cycling."
He said it is "great to see the 350-400 accomplished racers, but the real highlight of the day is the Kids Races. This too, is one of the largest and best attended kid's races in the country. The combination of the adult races and the kid's races make this a great 'welcome back from summer' event."
Details for the day's events are on the Liberty Cycle website.
According to the Township Committee agenda, the municipal clerk, police chief and municipal risk manager reviewed the application and recommend approval.