Happy Earth Day! That was the frequent greeting heard on Mon. 4/22/19 at the Earth Day event sponsored by the Environment Club at Wright College in Chicago.
Planning your own bike trip saves money and allows the freedom to explore new areas on a whim.
Evanston Bicycle Club members Peter Glaser and Robb Gieger shared tips for planning and riding a self-supported bike tour at the March 19 Evanston Bicycle Club meeting. They planned and rode their own bike trip last fall to the Vermont- Washington DC area without any dedicated SAG support, sleeping hotels or Airbnb properties each night.
We learned some new jargon while we were learning about electric scooters at the Feb. 19 Evanston Bicycle Club (EBC) meeting. For example:
“Electric Scooter” (also known as e-scooter), a shared, dockless, application based, micro-mobility device that requires charging
“Scooting”, the act of using an e-scooter.
“Juicing’, the practice of charging Lime brand scooters; people who are authorized to pick up and charge e-scooters at their homes at night for a fee are called Lime juicers
“Geofencing”, the use of GPS or RFID technology to create a virtual geographic boundary
A bicycle sharing system is a service in which bicycles are made available for share use to individuals on a short term basis for a fee. The Chicagoland system is called Divvy, and it allows people to borrow a bike from a “dock” and return it at another dock belonging to the same system. Docks are special bike racks that release a bike via computer control, when the user enters payment information or if a member, by entering a code. A smartphone app shows the locations of docks, how many bikes are currently parked and available to rent, and how many open positions.
When some people experience the joys of cycling, they want to spread the word far and wide to others-- or at least to people in their own neighborhood. At the January Evanston Bicycle Club meeting we heard from enthusiastic volunteers from local advocacy groups who are dedicated to getting more people on bikes and making it safer to ride
Pam Faulkner was inspired to do a woman’s charity ride after a customer came into Green Bay Cycles in Winnetka which she owns with her husband Larry, to buy a bike for her trip to Kenya. Before the woman left the shop with her new bike, Pam had registered online for a trip of her own to Kenya. She enjoyed it so much she signed up for another charity ride in China before her most recent trip in Sept. 2017 that started in John O'Groats (the far northeastern tip of mainland Scotland) and ended at Land's End (the far southwestern tip of Cornwall). The 2017 trip was the topic of her presentation at the Evanston Bicycle Club meeting on Nov. 20.
The guest speaker at the Oct. 16, 2018 member meeting of the Evanston Bicycle Club was Suzie LaBelle sharing details her trip bicycling from Pittsburgh, PA to Washington, DC on the Great Allegany Passage (GAP) trail and through the Chesapeake & Ohio (C&O) Canal National Historical Park.
The Evanston Bicycle Club grants program has awarded funds raised at the North Shore Century to bike-related projects and activities at local non-profit organizations for several years. Some bicycle organizations, like the League of American Bicyclists, Bike Illinois, and Active Transportation Alliance have received a donation for several years and others such as Evanston Streets Alive, Blackstone Bicycle Works, and Recyclery Collective have applied for and received grants for several years.
We just got back from a week in Beijing, China and, full disclosure, even though I am writing about biking there, I did not actually ride a bike. More about that later.
In the 1970’s China was known as the Kingdom of the Bicycle and the Flying Pigeon brand bicycle was the most popular product in China. Bike lanes in Beijing were 3 car lanes wide and there were reported to be 72 bikes for every 100 people.