With roots from the Lance Armstrong Foundation, the Twin Cities - KMSP-TV

With roots from the Lance Armstrong Foundation, the Twin Cities got wheels of its own

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) - Once called the Nature Valley Grand Prix, the North Star Bicycle Festival starts in St. Paul on Wednesday for five days of intense racing.

The North Star Bicycle Festival got its start in the late 1990s when the Lance Armstrong Foundation reached out to David LaPorte and asked for help to create the city's own replica of the Austin, Texas-based Ride for the Roses. Tour de Wings was launched in 1999, a two-day event near the Capitol grounds and a track race at the National Sports Center Velodrome.

Nature Valley Granola Bars joined as a festival in 2001 with the addition of a road race stage, and the festival and Grand Prix began to grow in popularity. In 2007, the Nature Valley Grand Prix became the top level stage race on the USA Cycling National Racing Calendar.

Now, it's evolved into a giant festival with a North Star Grand Prix, kids races, live music and of course, lightning-fast bicycling enthusiasts from around the country.

RACE DATES

Wednesday, June 11: St. Paul
Thursday, June 12: Cannon Falls
Friday, June 13: Minneapolis
Saturday, June 14: Menomonie
Sunday, June 15: Stillwater

MORE EVENT INFORMATION: http://www.northstarbicyclefestival.com/Default.aspx

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