May Bike Challenge: Bike to Work, Bike to School, Bike Before Your First Meeting

April 22, 2021

In May, we're challenging you to commute one day a week by bike or to take a bike ride before your workday starts once a week to simulate a bike commuteEveryone who "commutes" by bike one day a week and logs their trips on the MassBike Love to Ride Group will be entered to win some MassBike prizes. By joining Love to Ride and logging your trips in May, you will also be eligible to win prizes from the National Bike Challenge.

Join the May Challenge: 

  1. Join the MassBike Group on Love to Ride
  2. Take one "commute" by bike each week in May
  3. Log your trips on Love to Ride & mark them as "transport to or from work" 

If you participated in our April Challenge on Love to Ride, you will be automatically entered for our May Challenge once you log a commute trip in May. Just make sure to tag your commuting trips as "transport to or from work" in Love to Ride.

We'd love to see photos from your bike commutes, make sure to tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and let us know about your rides. This is part of our monthly ride challenge series leading up to Bay State Bike Month in September.


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ACTION ALERT - Contact Your State Representative in Support of Bicycle-Friendly Amendments

April 22, 2021

The legislative calendar comes in fits and spurts, with multiple tracks and parallel courses for legislative priorities to make their way through the State House in order to become law. MassBike works through the complication and confusion in our pursuit of several legislative priorities this session, including bills that would make for safer roads, to clarify electric bicycle regulations, promote bike commuting, and to fund rail trails and other infrastructure. We are also supportive of programs that promote health and wellness, support equity and combat racism, and tackle the existential crisis of climate change.

At this point in the two-year legislative session timeline that started in January, the bills have been filed and have made their ways to various committees, and we are awaiting hearings on the bills so we can present our support (and opposition) to specific pieces of legislation. This will happen in the coming months in spring and early summer.

However, more rapidly approaching is the debate about the State’s budget, which is being presented both from the Governor’s Budget as well the House Ways and Means. These budgets are big and dense, full of amendments, and cover pretty much the entirety of what the State is attempting to accomplish in the coming year. These budget bills also include provisions that MassBike is tracking related to bicycle safety, and this is where you come in!

We are asking our members to contact your State Representatives to co-sponsor two key amendments, and support these amendments in the budget debate.

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Introducing #LightsBrigade by Bkin

April 21, 2021

For the past several years, MassBike’s popular #LightsBrigade program has been brightening up cyclists across the commonwealth. Each winter, we’ve worked with volunteers, bicycle clubs, and civic & municipal groups across the commonwealth to distribute free bike lights to help cyclists be legal and seen when riding at night. We are thrilled to be able to expand this popular program thanks to a new partnership with Delta Cycle and their Bkin lights.

MassBike’s #LightsBrigade by Bkin is on a mission to shine bright lights across the commonwealth year-round. Many riders find themselves out at night without the required lights to help them stay visible to drivers and others on the roads and paths, and also be in compliance with the law. The #LightsBrigade by Bkin program engages riders where they are, on the roads and paths, and provides free bicycle lights. Previously our #LightsBrigade program ran during the dark winter months. Now, thanks to the support from Delta Cycle, we’ll be handing out free lights during the spring and summer months when the streets are busy with bicyclists of all ages. 

As part of this new partnership, we will be distributing Bkin lights across the commonwealth. Bkin lights have a powerful built-in battery, their bike tail light lasts up to 20 hours per charge. Bkin lights plug directly into a USB port for a quick, easy and cord-free charge. You can learn more about their lights at

MassBike’s #LightsBrigade by Bkin program will work with local bicycle clubs, civic & municipal groups, and volunteers to distribute free front and rear bike lights in the following ten regions: Berkshires, Cape & Islands, Connecticut River Valley, Central MA, Greater Boston, Metrowest, Nashoba Valley, North Shore, South Coast, South Shore. We are actively recruiting volunteers to help support light distribution events. If you’re interested in volunteering, please email [email protected] for more information.

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MassBike Monthly Meet-Ups Begin this Month

April 20, 2021
Want to know what MassBike has been working on in 2021? Join our first MassBike Monthly Meet-Up on Monday, April 26th at noon. Bring your lunch and get ready to learn about what MassBike has been up to in 2021. 
MassBike’s Executive Director, Galen Mook, will be discussing:
  • Our statewide bicycling education efforts
  • Legislative updates
  • How you can volunteer

Have a topic you want to bring up? Submit your questions via the comments below. 

This is the first in a series of monthly lunchtime updates. Every fourth Monday of the month, MassBike will host a virtual chat to fill you in on our work, give you a chance to ask questions, and let us know what you’ve been working on in your community.

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Halfway There - 30 Days of Biking Update

April 13, 2021

April’s 30 Days of Biking challenge is almost halfway through and at MassBike we’ve been enjoying getting on our bikes every day. For your daily dose of 30 Days of Biking encouragement, make sure you are following us on social media. The MassBike team has been bringing supporters along for our rides on the MassBike Facebook page and in the MassBike Instagram stories

As part of the MassBike April Challenge, Riders who take trips every day this month & log their rides on the MassBike Group on Love to Ride will be entered to win a Rover Rain Cape from Cleverhood. If you have been participating in 30 Days of Biking, you can still join the MassBike Challenge & log your previous trips.  

For those of you who may have missed the beginning of the April challenge, you can still join in the daily biking fun. We’ll be raffling off weekly MassBike prize packs for riders who ride every day for a week in a row and log their trips on the MassBike Group on Love to Ride. MassBike prize packs will include MassBike branded and bike-themed mystery items.

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Should Business Make Way for Bicycles?

March 31, 2021

A Guest Post by Zach O’Brien

Biking has many advantages over driving a car and biking obviously improves one’s own health, but did you know that biking also increases a city's well-being? In the fall of 2007, when New York City put in their first protected bike lane (a lane separating bike lanes from car traffic using permanent barriers, such as Jersey barriers or medians), the stores along the bike route reported a 49% increase in sales versus a 3% increase in the rest of the city. 

According to the U.S. Bicycling Participation Benchmarking Study Report from 2015, 15% of all Americans (45.1 million Americans) had ridden a bike at least once a year for transportation purposes. That might appear to be a high percentage until one delves a little deeper. Of that 15%, only 11% of those people rode their bikes to work 104 days a year or more. If we consider this, only 1.65% (4.96 million) people in America are committed to cycling as a means of transit.

How would these US biking statistics compare to another country? The Netherlands may be an extreme example, but a good role model nonetheless. According to the Special Eurobarometer 422a Quality of Transport report from 2014, when asked about their preferred modes of transport, Netherlanders used their bicycles 36% of the time. The United States has a long ​way to go to catch up to these bicyclists!

The U.S. Department of Transportation reported in 2010 that 86.1% of people in the United States used cars as their main means for commuting. However, the story is a bit different for dense urban cities that were established before the widespread use of cars. In these areas, the percentage of people who commute by car is far less than in other areas of the country. Dense urban areas have different modes of commuting than their less-urban counterparts. In 2010, the New York City Department of City Planning reported that fewer than 5% of the people who work in Manhattan drive a car to work. While cars remain undeniably important to the transportation needs of much of the US, dense urban areas work differently. Many other large cities in the US have similar patterns when it comes to commuting. 

A promising trend is developing; from 2000-2009 in Chicago, New York City, Boston, Portland, Seattle, San Francisco, and Washington DC, the relative number of people who commuted by car decreased from 6.0 to 12.7%. At the same time, the number of people who cycled increased from 50.2 to 230.0%, maybe we have headed in the right direction after all! 

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30 Days of Biking Challenge

March 25, 2021

Get riding this April with MassBike's "30 Days of Biking Challenge". Ride every day, even if it’s just once around your block, and you'll have a chance to win a Rover Rain Cape from Cleverhood. The April 30 Days of Biking is just the beginning of what we have planned to get you riding this year. We’ll be promoting monthly ride challenges leading up to Bay State Bike Month in September!

How to Join the 30 Days of Biking Challenge:

  1. Join the MassBike Group on Love to Ride
  2. If you use Strava, connect your Strava account in your Love to Ride profile to automatically log your rides (don’t forget to join the MassBike Strava Club!)
  3. Start riding & log your miles on Love to Ride! If you connected Strava, your rides will log automatically, just double-check after your first few rides to make sure they’re uploading properly.

Everyone who rides every day in April & logs their trips on Love to Ride will be entered to win a Cleverhood Rover Rain Cape. After biking through all those April showers, you'll have earned it. Challenge winners will be able to select the size and color rain cape of their choice. 

We are extremely excited for our monthly ride challenges leading up to Bay State Bike Month and will be rolling out challenge themes & rules soon– so stay tuned. Make sure you are following MassBike on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter so you don't miss any announcements.

Want to help sponsor Bay State Bike Month or one of our monthly challenges? Reach out to [email protected] for more information.


How to Connect your Strava to Love to Ride

  • Go to your Love to Ride Profile using little gear next to your name & clicking "Edit Profile"

  • Find the "Strava" line & follow instructions, when you are successfully connected it will look like this


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Bike Cleaning Tips

March 24, 2021

Giving your bike a regular cleaning guarantees it will keep you rolling for miles to come but sometimes it’s hard to know where to start. MassBike's Executive Director, Galen Mook, recently joined Ciclismo Classico to break down the dirt on the bike cleaning know-how. His tips stick to the basics, without needing a lot of space or fancy equipment. You can follow along with Galen's bike cleaning workshop using the materials list and cleaning tips provided below. 

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Support the Belmont Community Path

March 12, 2021

The Belmont Community Path needs your support in the next two weeks to secure funding for the path – please read below for action items to contact the Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO).

This two-mile bike and pedestrian path is a critical link in the 104 mile Massachusetts Central Rail Trail from Boston to Northampton, many pieces of which are now open. Specifically, this path will connect Waltham and points West to Cambridge’s Alewife Station via the Fitchburg cutoff. It will also provide connections to the Minuteman Bikeway and the Somerville Community Path. The Belmont Community Path is an essential piece in a broader transportation and recreation network for local communities and the state, and cannot go unfunded. The path is currently in the design phase and the town of Belmont is seeking funding for construction. The state legislature has already allocated some, but not all funds, and the town is now seeking further, federal, funding from the Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO).

#5: Belmont, just to the east of Waltham, is designing a “community path" that would link to the existing Fitchburg Cutoff Path, the Alewife Red Line station, and the Minuteman trail. (Waltham is also in the advanced stages of designing its own segment of the Mass. Central Rail Trail. The first section, between Main Street and Beaver Street, could begin construction in 2021.) (Source: StreetsBlog Mass)

Are you in support?  The MPO has already heard from a vocal minority in Belmont who are in opposition, and it is critical that path supporters make their voices heard by sending comments to the MPO as they evaluate transportation improvement projects for funding. To express support please email MPO TIP Manager, Matt Genova at [email protected] by March 22. The MPO will be making funding recommendations on March 25th.

The Friends of Belmont Community Path has created a template email that you may use to send your comments to the MPO. Feel free to cut and paste and customize to your liking. Personalized comments, though helpful, are not required.

If you have any questions about the project, you can reach out to the Friends of Belmont Community Path at [email protected]. You can also plug-in to more ways to support the path by joining the Friends of Belmont Community Path Google Group.


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A Youth Perspective on the 2021 National Bike Summit

March 10, 2021

A Guest Post by Dina Gorelik

Last week, I had the opportunity to virtually attend the National Bike Summit. It was a jam-packed four days with workshops and lobbying. The first session I attended was a youth breakout session. I was in a breakout room with several youth advocates and adult allies, and we discussed youth advocacy and empowerment, exploring ways we can empower young people to get involved with the bike advocacy movement. In all of our experiences, the biggest hurdle that young people faced was identifying how to get involved in the first place. If a student wants to make the route to school safer, who should they talk to? We also discussed the pervasive car culture that prohibits more young people from biking in the first place. Having the opportunity to meet other young people involved in bike advocacy was very inspiring; I have not had the opportunity to talk with other young bike advocates, and it was reassuring to hear that we all face similar problems and challenges.

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