Urban bibliophiles rally to the cause

Post Publishing's free weekday newspaper M2F has teamed up with the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) to organise "A Journey to Bangkok, World Book Capital 2013", a bicycle rally through the heart of old Bangkok on Nov 11.

The rally will kick off at 9am on Nov 11 and is expected to wrap up around 5.30pm that day. Anyone who wants to take part should register on www.M2Fnews.com before Oct 30.

The event is being held primarily to celebrate our city being chosen as next year's World Book Capital, but it is also an opportunity for M2F to mark its first anniversary and say thank you to all its loyal readers.

Cyclists will follow a route around the historic Rattanakosin Island quarter, making stops along the way at Suan Saranrom, Santi Chaiprakan Park, Dusit Zoo, Ratchadamnoen Stadium and the Golden Mount (Phu Khao Thong). This is where the _ wait for it _ reading begins.

At each of the five pit stops several questions will be posed and participants will be required to find the answers by perusing books which rally officials will provide. Only when they come up with the correct answers will the cyclists be allowed to proceed to the next stage of the route.

The start and end point is the BMA's HQ, Bangkok City Hall (Larn Kon Muang).

To enter the rally, competitors are asked to form two-person teams and pay a team registration fee of 500 baht. Those who don't have their own set of wheels will be able to rent bicycles for the day. The fee covers lunch at Dusit Zoo, special rally T-shirts, accident-insurance coverage and a survival pack containing a map, moist towelettes and nasal inhalers. Contestants will be judged on the time it takes them to finish each stage of the route, collecting points along the way, with the winning team receiving the sum of 10,000 baht. "Biking is a very green activity that's also good for you so it's something we want to be involved with," explained Supakorn Vejjajiva, president and chief operating officer of Post Publishing. "On top of getting lots of healthy exercise, participants will actually be contributing to the World Book Capital programme since all the money collected in registration fees will be donated to this cause.

"We are also asking everyone to bring along any books they want to donate. But ultimately [the rally] is about having fun in addition to exercising for good health and promoting the World Book Capital concept."

_ Parisa Pichitmarn