The League of American Bicyclists’ annual Advocacy and Education Awards are given out at the National Bike Summit each year. This year we’re going online with our celebrations of these leaders in the bicycling movement each Thursday during National Bike Month. This week we will present the Kittie Knox Award and the Susie Stephens Joyful Enthusiasm Award
Bike Month will be different this year, but we will make the most if it!
May is National Bike Month, promoted by the League of American Bicyclists and celebrated in communities from coast to coast. Established in 1956, National Bike Month is a chance to showcase the many benefits of bicycling — and encourage more folks to giving biking a try. This National Bike Month will necessarily be different, with a focus on well-being and connection.
The National Bike Challenge, which coincides with Bike Month is a great way to stay connected with friends and co-workers, while encouraging each other to get out and ride individually. You can search for groups in your community or company, or even start your own. We would be honored if you also joined the Georgia Bikes! group. (You can belong to multiple groups).
Haven’t been on your bike in awhile or concerned about cycling during the coronavirus pandemic? We have assembled information on best practices for health and safety to go along with our pocket guides and other publications. Want to teach younger family members to ride safely? We’ve got you covered there, too, with resources for teaching bike safety at home. In addition, we’ve curated a full calendar of cycling webinars, education programs, and other online events.
Stay tuned for announcements on Bike Month events next week, including webinars and a virtual advocacy happy hour! Stay safe and give extra support and ❤️ to essential workers and essential riders who are most at risk right now.
Communities throughout the United States and the world are finding that there are too few places where people can walk, bike, and roll while maintaining safe distance from each other. As the public health need for physical space continues, communities are starting to adapt streets to provide the public spaces required for biking and walking safely.
In this webinar, the League of American Bicyclists is joined by advocates who have worked with their communities to adapt streets to provide more space for people biking and walking. We are excited to be joined by:
- Karen Yacos from Local Motion in Burlington, Vermont;
- Randy LoBasso from the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia; and
- Dave Campbell from the East Bay Bicycle Coalition in Oakland, California.
Join this webinar to hear their experiences and how they continue to work with their community leadership and residents to ensure safe, accessible, places for people biking and walking as their communities adapt to COVID-19.
This webinar is about the issue of bike shops being designated as essential businesses.
Scheduled speakers include:
- Pete Piccolo from Bicycle Colorado, who successfully amended their state’s order to say the bicycle repair is essential.
- Galen Mook from MassBike, who is currently working to bring additional clarity to Massachusetts’s order, but has already clarified that local communities can deem bicycle repair as essential.
- Representatives from bicycle retailer Landry’s Bicycles and Chain Reaction Bicycles, who have been working to stay open and provide essential services to those who use bicycles as transportation.
- PeopleForBikes who are working with the bicycle industry on this and other issues. They have an excellent spreadsheet of state orders affecting bicycling and numerous resources on industry efforts.
Update (June 16, 2020): The League of American Bicyclists is currently evaluating the possibility of offering LCI seminars in a virtual format. Please delay registering for the seminar until further notice. We will update as soon as we have more information.
Georgia Bikes, Bike Walk Macon, and the League of American Bicyclists are hosting a League Cycling Instructor Seminar in Macon, Sept. 11-13. After earning certification through this 3-day, League of American Bicyclists Coach-led seminar, instructors are credentialed to teach Smart Cycling classes to children and adults.
The LCI Training Seminar focuses on teaching and demonstration techniques used with future students both on the road and in the classroom. The seminar emphasis is on how to teach bicycle safety and skills so as to provide increased comfort and confidence for new and returning bicyclists and youth. The seminar does not emphasize the content or specific details of the cycling course curricula. It is primarily about teaching, and each candidate will have opportunities during the seminar to practice facilitating parts of the Smart Cycling curriculum, both in the classroom and in parking lot skills drills.
Successful candidates will have a strong working knowledge of bikes and bike maintenance and a great deal of experience riding in high traffic scenarios. Successful candidates also have strong core values aligned with philosophies of the League, including helmet use, bicycling infrastructure, and full incorporation of the idea that all people who ride bicycles are equal cyclists, regardless of political affiliation, race, gender, age or religion, and that all students deserve respectful, polite and meaningful instruction. Completion of a Smart Cycling, Traffic Skills 101 course is a prerequisite for attending a seminar. League of American Bicyclists membership ($25-40) is also required for insurance purposes.
The registration fee is $350. More information on the LCI seminar format and requirements can be found on the LAB website.
Scholarships, lodging assistance available
Georgia Bikes is offering financial assistance with the seminar registration fee, along with assistance with League of American Bicyclists annual membership. In addition, Bike Walk Macon will arrange lodging with local hosts for those who request it. For more details and an application for scholarship support and/or lodging assistance, email Elliott Caldwell.
Please note, cancellation and transfer requests must be sent via email to email@example.com. The cancellation policy applies to all candidates whether the registration is being paid by an individual or by an organization. Please review the full cancellation policy (Click on “What is the cancellation policy?”)
A few quick thoughts about the state rankings published by the League of American Bicyclists that came out earlier in the week.
GA is ranked 19th, same place we were in 2017 the last time there was a report card. For perspective, we were 40th 8 years ago and 49th 10 years ago.
- Here is the blog post with all the necessary links: New Bicycle Friendly State Ranking Shows Progress But Perils Persist
- And our state report card: BFS Report Card: Georgia (PDF)
- Sean Keenan wrote an article for Curbed Atlanta that is worth a read:Georgia ranks 19th on national list of most bike-friendly states
These sorts of statewide issues are very much our wheelhouse so please reach out if you are doing stories on state bike/ped funding, GDOT policy etc. We can be reached here: firstname.lastname@example.org
Funding and Planning
It’s clear from our grades that funding and planning are challenges, as well as collecting data on planned/built bike and ped facilities. Yes, we live in a big state and those numbers are hard to track, but we have GDOT Districts and Regional Commissions who can help in that regard. Use of federal funds and dedicated state funds also can be improved — not every jurisdiction can pay for bike/ped projects and multi-use trails with TSPLOST/SPLOST dollars. And many small, less wealthy communities cannot afford a 10 percent match on a $1 million project.
Legislation and Enforcement
We are going to specifically ask about the grade on laws that restrict the behavior of people biking/walking; a D+ is not a passing grade in our book. We can push for better policy at the legislature in this area, no question, with equity as a guide in our work around enforcement.
We’ve already shared these rankings with our partners at GDOT and look forward to working with them on how to not just improve our grade but how to improve conditions for people biking, walking, and rolling to get to work, school, businesses, transit, or for health and fun.
While these grades are all relative to other states and seem a tad abstract, the consequences of lack of attention to crucial active transportation issues are matters of life/death, especially for vulnerable communities.
Bicycling is exciting, joyful, and brings us a sense of hope. But no one should fear not making it home to family because they walk, ride a bicycle, or roll in a wheelchair. It’s on us to help change that reality at the state level and we welcome suggestions on how to move forward.