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Bike zoo pedals appreciation for arts to West Texas, Mexico

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Pam LeBlanc
pleblanc@statesman.com

Where better to pedal an 80-foot, six-seated giant rattlesnake of a bike than West Texas? And where else but Mexico to cruise around on a winged monarch butterfly bike with organza wings?

This week, the Austin Bike Zoo makes its second trip to the Big Bend region, where it will unpack a slew of its pedal-powered works of art for spins around Terlingua and Presidio before crossing into the Mexican city of Ojinaga, escorted by officials from the Mexican Consulate.

The Bike Zoo will drop by the Terlingua school on Tuesday, then head to the school at Big Bend National Park for a visit on Wednesday.

On Friday, the menagerie will visit all the schools of Presidio. Then, starting at 5 p.m., the entourage will pedal, along with the school children of Presidio, decked out in monarch butterfly costumes, across the international bridge to the plaza in Ojinaga, Mexico.

The appearance is part of an effort to draw attention to the monarch butterflies that migrate each year to Mexico, and the challenges they face. Representatives from Michoacan, the Mexican state where the butterflies breed, will be on hand.

Bike Zoo officials will give rides to children at the plaza all evening. On Saturday, they'll visit the schools of Ojinaga. An evening event featuring the Austin Bike Zoo is planned. They'll cross back into Texas on Sunday.

For more information, go austinbikezoo.org/blog