Published April 17, 2001
Volume 9, Number 4

Bike to Work Week Promotes Healthy Commuting with Prizes and Information

Bike to Work DayMay 14 ­ 18 marks this year's celebration of Bike to Work Week, the annual event that encourages pedalers from throughout the Bay Area to cycle to work. This year's theme for Bike to Work Week (and Bike to Work Day, May 17) is "A Healthy Commute" and there are nice incentives to give it a try, according to Melisa Montoya, regional promotions coordinator at RIDES for Bay Area Commuters. 

"We're trying to promote alternative transportation, to get people to abandon their vehicles at least one time during the week. We think they will enjoy themselves and some may do it a couple of times per week." 

The event has seen tremendous growth each of the three years it has been held. Montoya notes that each year more than 1,000 new bikers sign on for the Bike to Work event. Last year 8,531 bike riders registered and participated, up from 7,780 in 1999 and fewer than 6,000 in 1998.

While a bicycle commute offers benefits like exercise, it also helps that riders in the Bike to Work Week event can win nice prizes. People who agree to bicycle to work at least one day during Bike to Work Week are eligible to win a Backroads bicycle trip for two to Tuscany, Kryptonite bicycle locks, Birkenstocks, BASS tickets, Pier 39 FunPaks, and gift certificates for River City Restaurant in San Francisco. 

Montoya says that a number of Energizer Stations ("bike pit stops") will be set up all over the Bay Area between 7:00 and 9:00 a.m. on Bike to Work Day, including one at the East Dublin/Pleasanton BART station sponsored by Hacienda, the City of Pleasanton, Dublin Cyclery, and BART. The Energizer Station will hand out goodies for riders including nice canvas tote bags, and Odwalla juice and health bars. Dublin Cyclery will also be performing free bike safety checks.

Registration forms for Bike to Work Week participation are available at www.rides.org. There riders will also find information on energizer station locations and a 'bike buddy' section which will allow novice cyclists to e-mail an experienced bicycle commuter near them for advice on route selection, commuting gear and other information. 

Chuck Tyler, owner of Dublin Cyclery offers free bike-commuting advice and information at the store before noon on weekdays. "Biking is great exercise, fun and helps the environment," says Tyler. 

"Biking to work is a definite increase in one's fitness and health condition and there is a notable cost savings for commuting -- I know from personal experience," he notes. "Also, you start the day and continue the day a lot fresher, with a good attitude, because you've gotten the exercise."

Bike to Work Week is sponsored by public agencies such as the Bay Area Air Quality Management District and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission as well as companies including Hacienda's ANG Newspapers, Sun Microsystems, and Kaiser Permanente.

Another online resource for information on the event is www.californiabikecommute.com, which provides more advice on how to go about establishing a bicycle commute as well as state-wide resources for cyclists. 

Individuals interested in organizing energizer stations should contact Melisa Montoya at 510-273-2060 or melisa@rides.org. Dublin Cyclery is located at 7001 Dublin Boulevard. Their phone number is (925) 828-8676. 


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