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Night skate to draw thousands

The event last year in Zurich drew more than 15,000 people.

(Monday Night Skate)

Starting on May 6, inline skaters have been invited to lace up and tour Bern and Zurich by night.

The "Monday Night Skate" began spontaneously in Zurich in the early 1990s, and has become so popular that more than 15,000 skaters took part in the Zurich event last year.

It was so popular in fact that the organisers decided to extend the event over several months and to other cities. This year for the first time, Bern and Winterthur will hold their own Monday Night Skates.

The first events this year will begin at 8pm on Monday, May 6 from Bürkliplatz in Zurich and at the same time from the Park and Ride Gangloff in Bern. The Zurich route is about 20 kilometres in length, the Bern course half as long.

Winterthur will hold its first Monday Night Skate on May 27.

SMS

There is no fee but participants are asked to register by SMS (see website linked below) so they can be kept informed of any changes or cancellations due to the weather.

Inline skates can be hired at the Zurich railway station and from many city sporting goods shops.

Switzerland is continuing to expand its network of inline skating routes. There are plans to complete a countrywide network of hiking, bicycle and skating trails connected with rail, bus and boat stops by 2006.

An effort has been successful to create such a network around the western "Three Lakes Region" which is hosting Switzerland's national exhibition. Expo.02 kicks off on May 15.

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