Dolly's Bike Blog

Musings about fun between my legs

Exploring Sumter County – March 15, 2015

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Don and I decided to join the local bicycling groups from The Villages today, on a ride called the Sumter Surprise.

We were joined by John & Madelyn, tandem riders and neighbors from Carmel, IN, who have stayed with us the past 2 nights.  A group of about 50 left Brownwood, the southern square in The Villages, complete with police escort and bicycle shop sag support.  We wandered over rural roads and some state roads to Bushnell, the county seat of Sumter County, which also includes The Villages.  One of the county commissioners, also a resident of The Villages, gave us a brief history of the county and the county courthouse (behind the group in the photo below).

We continued on to the Dade Battleground where U.S. forces battled with Seminole Indians, who were refusing to give up their land and move to Oklahoma – certainly a bit of Florida history I didn’t know (the ranger indicated that the battle’s significance was diminished because it was in a similar timeframe as the Battle at the Alamo).

Our final stop was at the Sumter County Fairgrounds.  Regretfully we arrived 45 minutes before the fair was scheduled to open, so after a bit of a walk-around, we climbed on the tandem and headed back to The Villages – 60 miles for the day!

I have ridden on each of the past 14 days, 274 miles on the tandem, 172 miles on the single, a total of 445 miles, averaging about 32 miles a day!  I plan to take the day off tomorrow, my body needs a bit of a rest.

 

John & Madelyn joined us for 2 days of tandem biking.

John & Madelyn joined us for 2 days of tandem biking.

A County Commissioner tells us about Sumter County history.

A County Commissioner tells us about Sumter County history.

At the Dade Battlefield, listening to history lesson by Park Ranger.

At the Dade Battlefield, listening to history lesson by Park Ranger.

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While the Fair wasn't yet open, we could view the 4H animals.

While the Fair wasn’t yet open, we could view the 4H animals.

3 Comments

  1. Sounds like you’re having a great time. BTW, mention to Don that he should smile for the camera next time. Also, if you want to know a bit more about Florida history, read a book called Devil in the Grove. It took place in Groveland, Fl which is very near where you are staying. The book is by Gilbert King.
    Stay safe.

  2. I think you will be ready for the trip to Bar Harbor!

  3. Hi Dolly and Don,
    Have been following your adventures again! Say hello to John and Madelyn too. They volunteer every year for the Pedal and Park at CarmelFest.

    Judy

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