Homer Alaska - Opinion

Story last updated at 3:48 PM on Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Homer's Seventh Annual Bike To Work Week Happening Now

By Catriona Lowe

National Bike Month is an opportunity to celebrate the unique power of the bicycle and the many reasons we ride. Whether you bike to work or school; to save money or time; to preserve your health or the environment; to explore your community or get to your destination, get involved in Bike Month in your city or state — and help get more people in your community out riding too!

Somehow we're already into the thick of Bike To Work Week, and by the time you read this, several events have already concluded. On Sunday, there was a group Spit ride, which was open to riders of all ages and abilities. The afternoon was blustery, but still people showed up and enjoyed a mellow bike out to Coal Town Coffee for treats before the ride back. Even blustery snow showers could not stop the fun.

Energizer booths and group rides are happening coast to coast, with Homer building on that tradition. Monday morning saw 22 bikers pass through the Energizer Booth at WKFL Park. Treats from Two Sisters were a welcome boost at the start of the work week.

Homer Mayor James Hornaday made a proclamation at City Council, declaring that for the City of Homer, May is Bike Month, May 14-18 is Bike to Work Week and Friday, May 18, is Bike To Work Day.

Tuesday evening was a Bike Movie and Social evening. We screened Ride The Divide — "an award-winning feature film about the world's toughest mountain bike race, which traverses over 2,700 miles along the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains. The film weaves the story of three characters' experiences with immense mountain beauty and small-town culture as they attempt to pedal from Banff, Canada, to a small, dusty crossing on the Mexican border." After which Heidi Herzog and Andrew Peter shared more stories and slides from their bike trip in Central Asia.

It's not too late to join in the Bike Week fun!

Friday is Bike to Work Day. Swing by the Energizer Booth at WKFL Park between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m., there'll be treats, juice and coffee, served with a big portion of camaraderie. There are sign in sheets for recording miles biked at the booth, and at various locations around town. New this year is online mileage recording, available on our website. Membership renewal is also available online.

A group ride kicks off the final celebrations for the week. Bicyclists will gather at WKFL Park after work on Friday, with the ride starting at 5:30 p.m. The ride will be at a pace designed for cyclists of any experience level to participate. Since a primary focus of HCC is safety, helmets are mandatory. We will ride around town, ending at the Beluga Lake Lodge in time for the second Annual Meeting of the Homer Cycling Club. Paid up members of HCC will vote for the Board of Directors, which is one of the final hurdles in preparing to apply for 501c3 non-profit status.

The purpose of the HCC is: to improve conditions for bicyclists at the local level, to establish bike routes and mountain bike trails, host group rides, organize events such as races and promote bicycling as environmentally friendly, healthy and enjoyable. Monthly meetings are on the first Wednesday of each month in Room B103 at Homer High School at 6:30 p.m.

Further information is available at homercyclingclub.com.

Catriona Lowe is active in the Homer Cycling Club.