The Bike/Walk Summit Needs Your Stories

A couple of weeks ago, we posted about a story contest to help us make the case for biking to our elected officials. This is a reminder that the deadline for story submission is coming up this Friday, April 27. The stories will be judged based on the strength of the emotional appeal to supporting bike programs and infrastructure. The top three winners will be awarded the following prizes:

To submit a story:

  1. Make sure the story is no longer than 300 words.

  2. Make sure it focuses on biking or walking and the impact it has had on your life. The stronger the emotional appeal, the better!

  3. Include the name of your state representative and senator (found at this site)

  4. Attach a photo of yourself or related to the story if possible.

  5. Please send it in to annie@massbike.org no later than Friday, April 27th.


These stories will be used not only for the Bike/Walk Summit, but will also form a foundation for a database of such personal stories.


The Bike/Walk Summit


You can read more about the summit here, but in brief we are going to be asking our state legislators to support bills currently being considered that would improve biking and walking in Massachusetts. For more information, please contact events@massbike.org.


Grant Awarded To Transform Communities Around The State

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health recently awarded MassBike funding through the Community Transformation Grant, which promotes active living in eight counties outside of the Boston area (see map below). We at MassBike are excited to have this great opportunity to serve communities around the state, and look forward to leveraging this expanded capacity to better serve our regional chapters and bikers from Cape Cod to the Berkshires.

About The Grant


The purpose of the Community Transformation Grant is to promote system and policy changes which improve the ability to lead healthy, active lives. On our end, that will mean working with municipalities and community groups to undertake built environment assessments and provide trainings on how to positively impact local infrastructure. We can provide services in the communities listed below; if you are interested in hosting a training, you can contact bikeinfo@massbike.org.



The priority communities for this grant are (in green above):

  • Plymouth Co. - Brockton, Plymouth

  • Hampden Co. - Springfield, Holyoke

  • Berkshire Co. - Lee, Lenox, Stockbridge, Pittsfield, Great Barrington, Adams, North Adams Clarksburg

  • Hampshire Co. - Amherst, Belchertown, Northampton, Williamsburg

  • Barnstable Co. - Barnstable, Dennis, Mashpee, Orleans, Wellfleet

  • Franklin Co. - Greenfield, Montague, Orange

  • Islands - Nantucket, Martha's Vinyard (Dukes Co.)


We'll be keeping you updated as we move forward with this grant, so stay tuned for details in the coming months.

MassBike Seeks Summer Interns

[caption id="attachment_18773" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Interning is one of the oldest forms of education - a medieval baker with his intern."][/caption]

With the changing of the seasons comes the sad departures of our current interns and a new effort to fill the void left behind. What would MassBike be without its interns? The symbiotic relationship we have formed with the strong work ethic and unbridled enthusiasm of our college aged apprentices has led to some great things. This past semester, we have made huge strides forward on two projects, the Bike/Walk Summit and an update of our Bicycle Statistics page.

The two positions of critical importance just so happen to also be two fantastic opportunities for learning. We are looking for an Events Marketing Intern to assist with our outreach efforts, and an Education and Advocacy Intern to help with our bike safety and advocacy trainings. If you are interested in either position, email bikeinfo@massbike.org to apply or get more information.

Join the Rodman Ride for Kids: September 29, 2012

Do you love riding your bike outside on those great New England fall afternoons?  Are you looking for a way to give back and help vulnerable kids while doing something you love?  Then join MSPCC’s team for the Rodman Ride for Kids on September 29, 2012.

It’s a 25, 50 or 100-mile flat bike ride in Foxborough, MA for riders of all experience levels, and 100% of the proceeds go to vital programs that treat and prevent child abuse.  We’ll work with you to coordinate training events, set and achieve realistic fundraising goals and generate corporate sponsorship.

All you need is a bike and a helmet, and in a single afternoon, you can make a profound and long-lasting impact in the lives of thousands of children.  For more information, contact Justin Tsoi at 617.587.1526 or jtsoi@mspcc.org.

Clean Extension Passed on Federal Transportation Bill

Last Friday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a clean 90-day extension to the transportation bill, SAFETEA-LU. The Senate quickly followed suit, making this the ninth extension of the current federal transportation authorization. Passing a "clean" extension (which does not reduce funding for any program) was one of our goals at the National Bike Summit. We would especially like to thank Representatives Tsongas (District 5) and Lynch (District 9) for voting in favor of the bill. The next job our members of congress have is passing a new authorization, hopefully not very different from the one the senate passed just a few weeks ago.

This Week Only! Buy Your Bike Night Tickets And Get An Extra Free Cocktail!

Bike Night is only one month away and as a special promotion for this week only, buy your tickets before Friday April 13, 2012 and get an extra free cocktail of your choice!

This year at Bike Night, we will be having a fashion show highlighting the best in functional, stylish urban bike fashion. The event will be held May 3rd, from 6:30-9pm at the Westin Waterfront in Boston. The Westin Waterfront has graciously provided us with a beautiful space that is not only perfectly designed for the fashion show but also boasts exquisite views of historic Boston Harbor. The night will begin at 6:30 with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres provided by Bacardi and Sam Adams. Each ticket holder will be given two free drink tickets and any additional drinks can be purchased for $5.

After cocktail hour those in attendance will be ushered into the dining room for a seated three-course dinner including salad, entrée, and dessert.  Entrée options will include chicken, beef, or vegetarian.  Dinner will wind down around 8:30 and the night’s entertainment will begin.

The fashion show will focus on clothing that goes “Beyond the Spandex” and will include garments that highlight bicycling as a practical, fun, stylish transportation option for all types of people. This year in the fashion show you will see items from Ibex, Hincapie, Swrve, Nuu-Muu, REI, Brompton, Rudy Project, Defeet, Geekhouse, Club Ride, EMS, and many more!

During the entire evening attendees will have a chance to buy raffle ticket to win one of three urban commuter bicycles from Specialized and Giant. In addition to the raffle there will be a silent auction with a number of premium items from Bailey Works, Hubway, Sam Adams, Grey Goose Vodka, ZipCar, Road ID, Mavic and more.

This should be a really special night for all in attendance – not only will it provide you a chance to show your support for MassBike, but it will also provide you with a high-end night of bicycle themed entertainment.  From the sponsors and location to food, drinks, and entertainment, this year’s Bike Night is sure to be the bike event that everyone is talking about.  So get your tickets today!

Set Your Calendars - Bay State Bike Week Is Coming!



After much preparation, the Bay State Bike Week website is officially up and running. We and our partners MassDOT and MassRIDES are looking forward to another great series of events around the state. Last year, there were over 180 events from Cape Cod to the Berkshires - this year promises to be just as big. We are going to continue receiving event submissions right up until the week begins; visit our website for current information on events near you!

If you are an event organizer, you can submit an event on our website. It's easy to do, and adds to the chorus of bike breakfasts, film screenings and rides going on around the state during the week. You can also sign up to become a partner to receive t-shirts, bells, and other items to help promote the event. For more information, contact us by clicking here or emailing baystatebikeweek@massbike.org.

Finally, I want to mention that MassBike's main event this year is our Bike/Walk Summit, co-sponsored with WalkBoston and taking place on May 17th at the State House.  Find out more information on the event page, or visit the registration page directly. This year for Bay State Bike Week, let's get Beacon Hill moving!

From The Bay State To Capitol Hill

It was a whirlwind trip of conferencing, networking, and lobbying before packing back up and heading back north, but we managed to do it! A big thanks goes out to the folks who took the time to come down to Capitol Hill for the National Bike Summit - as usual, we couldn't have done it without you.

[caption id="attachment_18470" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Jackie and Kara (LivableStreets Alliance) and Jess (MAPC) "][/caption]

As we've been posting over the past several months, the transportation funding situation in DC is abysmal. The Senate put together a bill that, while it largely preserves funding for biking and walking, includes a modest reduction from current spending levels and increases the competition for the funding. Meanwhile, advocates defeated a House attempt to pass a bill eliminating bike funding. This week, the House has proposed a 60-day extension, further delaying passage of a new transportation bill. It was against this backdrop that advocates from around the country came to the nation's capital to talk with their members of Congress and their staffs to make the case on the importance of investments in biking and walking.

We in the MassBike office were working hard literally up until the last minute coordinating meetings with Congressional staffers to make sure that every office met with someone from Massachusetts. In the end, we were able to meet with two members of Congress (Ed Markey and James McGovern) and staff from the other ten offices. You can see pictures from the summit here.

[caption id="attachment_18472" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Congressman Ed Markey (center) with advocates"][/caption]

This year we had 15 event participants from across the state, including professional advocates, local businesses, and citizens that just care about better biking in their communities. The delegation included:



































































Name Organization
Price Armstrong MassBike
Jackie Douglas Livable Streets Alliance
Richard Fries Bikes Belong
Tom Henry Landry's Bicycles
Jack Johnson Landry's Bicycles
Tim Johnson Team Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com
Nancy Maier pedaling.com
Dorothy Nichols Todson (Topeak)
Kara Oberg LivableStreets Alliance
Don Podolski New Horizons Sports
Jessica Robertson MAPC
Jeff Roth Local Advocate
John Siemiatkoski LAB, MassBike
David Watson MassBike
David Wilcox Bikes Not Bombs, Broadway Bicycle School

 



Unlike some other states, Massachusetts is fortunate to have a Congressional delegation that is very supportive of biking and walking. In fact, we presented Senator Scott Brown with a National Bicycle Leadership Award from the League of American Bicyclists (see picture below). We urged our members of Congress to convince their colleagues to support biking and walking, and offered whatever help we could to enable their advocacy in the Capitol. We look forward to continuing to work with our Congressional delegation to promote biking and walking at the federal level while local advocates push on the ground to turn federal support into off-road paths, bike lanes, intersection improvements, and signage that makes the streets safer for all users.

[caption id="attachment_18471" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="David Watson Presenting Award To Karalyn O'Brien, Senator Brown's Transportation Aide"][/caption]

In the meantime, we are going to be shifting our attention to the upcoming Massachusetts Bike/Walk Summit, in which we will be asking advocates from across the state to come to Beacon Hill to let their state legislators know how very important biking and walking in their community is. This event takes place on Thursday, May 17th and is the central MassBike event for Bay State Bike Week. If you would like to attend, please RSVP by clicking here.

Finally, in order for us to undertake our federal and state advocacy, we need the support of groups and citizens who want to see better biking in Massachusetts. Please consider joining or donating to MassBike today so that we can keep advocating to key decision makers for years to come.

Submit Your Awesome Bike Story



A big part of advocacy is explaining to our elected officials why biking and walking is important in our communities. The numbers are easy to come up with - just look at this slick infographic created by Bikes Belong. What we need, though, are the personal stories about the difference that biking has made in your life here in Massachusetts. We made a good start with our "And I Ride" series, but we need more. Whether it's a childhood memory, thoughts on the importance of particular pieces of infrastructure, or anything in between we want to hear what you have to say!

Once we've collected the personal stories, the MassBike staff is going to choose the top three winners. The stories will be used during the upcoming Massachusetts Bike/Walk Summit to help communicate the importance of active transportation to our state legislators. We are also planning on starting a database with these stories for future use when we talk to elected officials across the state and in congress.

The best story will win a $50 gift certificate to the Cambridge Brewing Company, second place will win a Nite Rider Mako 3.0 light set, and third place will win a Resource Revival bottle opener, and the top three stories will be featured on MassBike's website.

If you have a story you want to share, please do the following:

  1. Make sure the story is no longer than 300 words.

  2. Make sure it focuses on biking or walking and the impact it has had on your life. The stronger the emotional appeal, the better!

  3. Include the name of your state representative and senator (found at this site)

  4. Attach a photo of yourself or related to the story if possible.

  5. Please send it in to annie@massbike.org no later than Friday, April 27th.


Thanks so much, and happy storytelling!

Buy A Table And Save At This Year’s Bike Night!



Bike Night 2012 is just around the corner and tickets are now on sale on the MassBike website. For those thinking about attending, get your friends together and purchase a table (10 Tickets) for $10 off each ticket.

This year at Bike Night, we will be having a fashion show highlighting the best in functional, stylish urban bike fashion. The event will be held May 3rd, from 6:30-9pm at the Westin Waterfront in Boston. The Westin Waterfront has graciously provided us with a beautiful space that is not only perfectly designed for the fashion show but also boasts exquisite views of historic Boston Harbor. The night will begin at 6:30 with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres provided by Bacardi and Sam Adams. Each ticket holder will be given two free drink tickets and any additional drinks can be purchased for $5.

After cocktail hour those in attendance will be ushered into the dining room for a seated three-course dinner including salad, entrée, and dessert.  Entrée options will include chicken, beef, or vegetarian.  Dinner will wind down around 8:30 and the night’s entertainment will begin.

The fashion show will focus on clothing that goes “Beyond the Spandex” and will include garments that highlight bicycling as a practical, fun, stylish transportation option for all types of people. This year in the fashion show you will see items from Ibex, Hincapie, ModRobes, Swrve, Nuu-Muu, REI, Brompton, Rudy Project, Defeet, Geekhouse, Club Ride, EMS, and many more!

During the entire evening attendees will have a chance to buy raffle tickets to win one of three urban commuter bicycles from Specialized and Giant. In addition to the raffle there will be a silent auction with a number of premium items from Bailey Works, Hubway, Sam Adams, Grey Goose Vodka, ZipCar, Road ID, Mavic and more.

This should be a really special night for all in attendance – not only will it provide a chance to show your support for MassBike, but it will also provide you with a high-end night of bicycle themed entertainment.  From the sponsors and location to food, drinks, and entertainment, this year’s Bike Night is sure to be the bike event that everyone is talking about. So get your tickets today!


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