LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Louisville's bi-annual Hike, Bike and Paddle is back at Waterfront Park and in-person.

COVID-19 forced the event to be virtual in 2020, but a sizeable crowd turned out on a cool Memorial Day morning to take part in activities. It's a day where the Louisville community gets out and exercises, but Mayor Greg Fischer said it's more than that.

"People think, 'Hey, it's great. It's a three-day weekend.' But let's remember Memorial Day is a day where we want to pay tribute to those that gave the ultimate price with their lives, so we could have a free society and do things like this," Fischer said.

Monday marked the 33rd Hike, Bike and Paddle in Louisville, and participants like bicyclist Brenda Snook was happy to join in, stating that, "I'm thrilled to have it back this year."

Snook said sitting out last year was disappointing. "It was a huge bummer. Everybody kind of did it on their own, but it's just not the same to have all the excitement, the comradery of other people there. Makes it a lot more fun," she said.

Participants were able to warm up with activities on the Great Lawn like Tai Chi, yoga and Zumba before the big event.

"I love to see the families come out, especially with the kids and do the bike rides for the first time on the street," said Fischer.

But the pandemic still played a part with the event scaled back and the appearance of the Lou Vax Mobile Mission to give out vaccines.

Mayor Fischer said Louisville is not out of the woods yet.

"There's still about a third of the city or so that needs to be vaccinated that have not," he said. "With these variants that are coming in, they're much more infectious -- much more deadly."

The next Hike, Bike and Paddle is scheduled for Labor Day.

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