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Greater Mankato Bike & Walk Advocates participate in a leisurely bike tour of historical homes, buildings and sites in Mankato. File photo

MANKATO — The League of American Bicyclists recognized Greater Mankato as a bicycle friendly community for making the city safe for people traveling on two wheels.

The league is an organization that promotes bicycle use, and the group released its biannual awards Wednesday. It has awarded 404 communities around the United States where biking is a safe, real option for transportation.

Mankato was among three Minnesota towns, including St. Louis Park and Bemidji, that earned an award for how safe and convenient it is to ride bicycles there.

Minnesota was named second best state for cyclists, after Washington. 

Cities apply to receive recognition and can be awarded either diamond, platinum, gold silver or bronze for the work they do to promote cycling. Speed limits, bike lanes, safety laws and events like "Bike to Work Day" are evaluated in each community for the awards. 

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