Cyclists take film to heart, ride in Victoria

Johnathan Silver By Johnathan Silver

Aug. 7, 2014 at 5 p.m.

The outdoors. The exercise. The freedom.

Cyclist Dionisio Reyes, 62, is a free man on his bike.

"Good air going through my lungs. That's the best feeling," the Victoria resident said. "You never know what you're going to find. Sometimes you find riders. You find good company."

Reyes joined about 20 cyclists as dusk neared over DeLeon Plaza in downtown Victoria. The cyclists, who zoomed past bystanders, passersby and supporters, participated in a bike ride before the screening of "Breaking Away" on Thursday night.

The 1979 coming-of-age film features a small-town, recent high school graduate who agonizes over what to do next in life, obsesses over an Italian cycling team and seeks the affections of a college girl. One thing the main character knows he wants to be, is a champion of Indiana University's "Little 500" bicycle race.

The film was screened at Leo J. Welder Center for the Performing Arts.

Sara Hounshell Meinhart, a two-time Indiana University graduate, introduced the movie with Victoria Mayor Paul Polasek. Meinhart recalls race weekends fondly.

"It represents Indiana," she said about the movie. "Watching it now is fun."

Victoria resident Abiel Ramos, 40, also joined in the bike ride and has been riding since he was 16.

"I zone out," he said.

The bike ride was an opportunity to makes friends and get clean exercise.

"It was very fun. Ve.ry motivational to see everybody out there," he said, adding that the film, which he watched again Thursday, brings back memories from when he was younger.

Polasek, an avid bicyclist, described the message he takes away from it.

"Anyone can achieve anything if they want it bad enough and put their mind to it," he said.



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