This Friday, May 17, is National Bike Everywhere Day! Last year, Cascade Bicycle Club counted nearly 20,000 Seattleites pedaling to work, school, home or to the local coffee shop. Cyclists stopped at more than 120 “celebration stations” to get hydration, swag, high fives and a sense of Seattle’s cycling community. This year will bring even more stations, sponsored by everyone from local bike shops to Seattle Children’s Hospital to the Seattle Public Library. Plus, many Seattle companies including Facebook, Expedia, the Port of Seattle, and Fred Hutch all have registered stations for riders.
Cascade Bicycle Club is the hub for all activity for Bike Everywhere Day. They are the nation’s largest statewide cycling organization and have been pushing the two-wheeled lifestyle since 1970. We can thank them for the Burke-Gilman Trail, the superhighway of Seattle cyclists. Seattle is just teeming with riders, many of them bike commuters, eschewing cars for self-powered transportation. While the construction of bike lanes has not been without controversy, there’s no doubt it opens up access for bike commuters, and is one solution to easing our increasing traffic problems. Seattle was just named the Best Bike City in America by Bicycling Magazine, so it’s not surprise we take this holiday to heart.
You can’t talk about Bike Everywhere Day without mentioning the enormous change that’s happened in our city since bike share programs became ubiquitous. (Let’s not talk about Pronto—that’s just painful.) We’re talking about the infusion of dockless e-bikes by Lime and now the Uber-owned Jump. (RIP Ofo and Spin bikes—we hardly knew ye). Last year, Seattle became the first Lime market in the U.S. to break one million “microbility” rides. You can’t swing a cat without hitting one of the bright green bikes. Again, while not without controversy, bike share programs have certainly increased the number of people ditching cars for short commutes and attracted a whole swath of non-riders who now might be digging in their garage for their own wheels to participate in celebrations this Friday.
Bike Everywhere Day is just one event in Bike Everywhere Month, which happens for the entire month of May. “Bike Everywhere Month is a month to celebrate all the reasons to ride,” says Diana Bryant, content strategy manager for Cascade. “It’s not just about commuting to work—it’s about biking everywhere. It’s a great way to get people who are new to biking out there with mentors or buddies and show them all the benefits bicycling has to offer.”
Ditch the bus or the car on Bike Everywhere Day. It’s a great time to roll out the wheels for the first time of the season if you haven’t already, and see why Seattle is a great place to ride.
For more info on Bike Everywhere Day, go to cascade.org/bikeeverywhereday.