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It’s Bike to Work Day… or Not

by Ted Johnson

It’s Bike to Work Day!

What else is there to say? If you work a day shift, by now you have either biked to work today or you didn’t.

But wait. This is the end of National Bike to Week, as decreed by the League of American Bicyclists.

Perhaps it’s not Bike to Work Week where you live. In some places, Bike to Work Week already happened. British Columbia’s week begins on May 28. Where I live, my local Bike to Work Week doesn’t begin until June 3. Chicago’s Bike to Work Week doesn’t begin until June 9.

So I’ll be participating in Bike to Work Week all over again in a couple of weeks. It occurred to me that there are probably other cities or organizations that will be having their bike to work weeks in the near future.

There used to be a Web site that tried to keep all of these Bike to Work Weeks straight, but it seems to have fizzled. So I’ve decided to pick up the torch and make solidarity with any group anywhere in the world where you are having a Bike to Work Week. Even with you folks in the Southern Hemisphere, who presumably do your big week when it’s ass-freezing cold where I live, I will promote and participate your Bike to Work Week. (I think you Australians do yours in March, but there’s always next year.)

But I only have so much time for all this Googling. So if you have a Bike to Work Week that falls on week other than the one decreed by our LAB overlords, use the contact form and let me know when it is.

I’ve celebrated this week by goofing around on QuickMeme. If you don’t follow our Facebook feed, you’ve missed all of these.

 
Burley nomad 229

6 Responses to “It’s Bike to Work Day… or Not”

  1. I think you already know San Francisco Bay Area Bike to Work Day is the 2nd Thursday of May (i.e. last week), while much of the rest of California does it the third Friday of May (i.e. the same as the LAB “National” day).

    Colorado cities do Bike To Work Day on the last Wednesday of June (June 27 this year).

    Santa Cruz County does an autumn bike to work day on the first Thursday of October. Louisville KY also has an official autumn BTWD; theirs is in September.

    The cities of Boulder, CO; Fort Collins, Co; Madison, WI and Chicago IL do Winter Bike To Work Days sometime in January.

  2. Brent Logan says:

    Not to worry if you didn’t ride this week. It’s still National Bike *Month*.

  3. Joel says:

    Dear Ted,

    “Bike Month, Bike Week, or Bike Day” seems like headline news to most Americans because bicycles are considered a commuting option of last resort.

    STOP!

    Before anyone jumps down my throat on that last statement, please know that I thoroughly enjoy my multi-mode bicycle commute at least fourteen days per month or more year round.

    Anytime we can bang the drums for attention is going to be very important. I have upped my ante for commuting advertising in the following ways:

    1. Fastidiously obey traffic laws. I will not give an observer a chance to say, “That is the reason we should not have bikes on the street.”

    2. Advertise my commute. I wear an ANSI day-glow mesh vest with two 2″ horizontal bars and two 2″ vertical bars every time I get on my bike, day or night. Many people would like to think that I look like a barricade barrel on two wheels. This tells people that I do not care if I look funny, I care about riding safely and being visible. This vest makes just about every other reflector on my bike a moot point. Most people look at this vest and say, “This guy is a serious commuter and he is doing his best to be safe, I am going to cut him a little slack if he needs it.”

    3. Acknowledge courteous and considerate drivers. As cyclists, we have a right to the road but I do the same when I ride a car. When someone waits longer as I ride by, instead of zipping out in front of me, I give a smile, say thank you and acknowledge their courtesy. They might not hear you but they can read your lips and know by your wave that you appreciate their actions. If I get to a pinch point and some one patiently follows me instead of forcing themselves by, I give a wave and a thumbs up. I am a bicycle commuter ambassador.

    4. I try to cycle year round but I will never feel arrogant against those that do not. Just because I do it does not mean you have to do it. This is America, we can make our own choices. I am happy if you try it for even one day a year. It is like tasting food, I cannot stand anyone who does not like something that they have never tasted. If you try to cycle one day to work and you did not like it, I respect you far more than someone bad mouthing the experience who never did it.

    Did I tell you that I like to ride my bike?

  4. Dj Arif says:

    For Bike to Work Day, bike groups across the country are sponsoring group rides and offering buddy services to pair new riders with experienced commuters. They hope the day shows people it’s easier than they think to bike to work. The incentives, they say, are better health and fitness, a more ecofriendly commuter footprint, and cost savings.

    Just how much can you expect to save if you commit to biking?

  5. Paul Jackson says:

    Hey there…
    Thanks for picking up the torch :)

    Here’s a link to a fairly active advocacy group in Australia and their Ride2work day:
    http://ride2work.com.au/general/ride-to-work/93071/

    It’s in October…not too cold in your part of the world then, I think :)

    Ride on, brother.

  6. zomg says:

    Every day is bike to work day for me, unless it’s raining hard enough I can’t see the path or it’s cold enough I can’t feel my legs. (Or I have to drive the track team car pool). My daily two way commute is 10 miles – Let’s call it 2500 commute miles a year. My car gets 25mpg in the city, fine, that’s 100 gallons of gas, ca. $400 that I’m not spending. And it’s one oil-change cycle worth of car maintenance, $50. I still have the car, but I save $100 a year on insurance because of low-mileage discount. I don’t think I can amortize my other car costs here, I still have the damn thing. Bike maintenance is around $100 a year (I’m cheap and it is a tough bike). So, I’m easily saving $450 a year by bike commuting. It is a respectable amount of money, but it’s not a life-changer. I imagine many of the tangible benefits are still difficult to quantify, such as the health benefits due to exercise and the environmental benefits due to emitting less pollution. And there are mental health benefits that may not apply if you have to share the road with homicidal motorists all the time. I’m probably low-balling the true costs of the car, as I don’t feel like arguing about that, it’s not very important. Suffice it to say that it’s unlikely you’ll be driven to this by economics unless you flat out can’t afford a car. You have to want to do it for other reasons.

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