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Archive for April, 2019

Cyclists ride on the Sitka Cross Trail (Photo courtesy of KCAW-Raven Radio)

To celebrate National Bike MonthSitka Trail Works and the Sitka Bicycle Friendly Community Coalition invites the public to a free bike tour, guided by Doug Osborne, on the Sitka Cross Trail. The event is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 4,  and will meet at the Cross Trail access near the Sitka Performing Arts Center.

The tour is approximately a 10 miles, moderate to strenuous ride to Kramer Drive and back to the trailhead. The Cross Trail access point is behind Sitka High School, near the Sitka Performing Arts Center.

For more information, call 747-7244, or visit http://www.sitkatrailworks.org.

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As we enter National Bike Month in May, Sitka Community Hospital director of health promotion Doug Osborne will lead a brown bag lunch-and-learn about cycling in Sitka.

This event is free and takes place from noon to 1 p.m. on Friday, May 3, at the Sitka Community Hospital downstairs classroom. The Basement Bistro is right next door, for those who need to buy a lunch.

During the talk, Doug will discuss what makes Sitka a great place to ride a bike, how to be safe when you ride, how to ride in the rain, how to ride on gravel trails, how to join the Sitka Cycling Club, and more.

For more information, contact Doug Osborne at 747-0373 or dosborne@sitkahospital.org.

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The Sitka Cycling Club (formerly known as the Sitka Bicycle Friendly Community Coalition) will meet from 3-4 p.m. on Wednesday, May 1, at the Sitka Public Library (note time change).

The monthly meeting is open to everyone interested in making Sitka an even better town for cyclists of all ages. Topics include brainstorming ideas on how to grow our Sitka cycling club, planning the Alaska Walk and Bike Conference in Sitka in early June, discussion of National Bike Month events in May, the creation of a statewide biking/walking advocacy group (tentatively called Walk/Bike Alaska), a discussion about what we can do to make Sitka more bicycle friendly, and other topics.

For more information, call Doug Osborne at 747-0373 or Holly Marban at 966-8938.

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National Bike Month kicks off on Wednesday, May 1, and Sitka residents are encouraged to find ways to get out and ride your bike this month. The seasons are changing, so make sure you get out on your bike and enjoy a ride.

This is a great time to help Sitka show why it earned an upgrade to the Silver level of the Bicycle Friendly Community program in 2016, and was featured on the cover of the Winter 2017 edition of Bicycle Friendly America magazine in February.

Our National Bike Month schedule concludes with the annual Sitka Community Bike Ride on Saturday, May 25, where we celebrate the 128th anniversary of the first bike seen in Sitka (on May 28, 1891) with a ride through downtown Sitka. This is a great family friendly event to celebrate cycling in Sitka, and people are encouraged to bring any classic or unusual bikes they have to this event. We hope to have someone available to do minor maintenance before the ride (pump up tires, oil chains, tighten brake cables, etc.).

Also on the agenda are National Bike to School Day on Wednesday, May 8; the Sitka Bike Rodeo for kids on Saturday, May 11; our annual National Bike to Work Week (May 13-18) drawing for prizes for those who commute to work or school by bike during the week; two Sitka Cycling Club monthly meetings on Wednesday, May 1, and Friday, May 24, at the Sitka Public Library; a brown bag lunch-and-learn about cycling in Sitka on Friday, May 3, at Sitka Community Hospital; the Julie Hughes Triathlon on Saturday, May 18; and the Sitka Trail Works Cross Trail guided bike ride on Saturday, May 4.

In addition, we plan a special second annual Blessing of the Bikes and Worldwide Ride of Silence on Wednesday, May 15, at Crescent Harbor. This event honors those cyclists who have been killed or injured by cars or trucks and also celebrates cyclists’ rights to use the roads.

As in past years, those cyclists who ride their bike to work, school or on errands during National Bike To Work Week (May 13-17) can fill out tickets at Yellow Jersey Cycle Shop for a chance to win a gift certificate from Yellow Jersey, with other prizes possible. The prize drawing will be at the Julie Hughes Triathlon on May 18. To donate a prize, contact Doug Osborne at dosborne@sitkahospital.org.

Over the last year or so, the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities has been updating the Alaska Statewide Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan. They are on the final draft, and Sitka cyclists can still submit feedback on the website. This is important since Alaska’s last update to the plan was more than 20 years ago (1994).

In addition, Sitka cyclists are encouraged to join with thousands of others from around the country as they ride in the fifth annual National Bike Challenge, a free event that runs from May 1 through Sept. 30.

Cyclists can ride in the National Bike Challenge as individuals, for their workplaces or on other teams, and the mileage they log also will help their cities and states in the rankings. In 2016 more than 45,000 cyclists rode nearly 25 million miles during the five months of the National Bike Challenge (stats weren’t available for 2017 or 2018).

Don’t forget to sign up for the free Sitka Cycling Club by clicking the link at the top right of the website page. Also, join Sitka’s Bicycle Benefits program at any of our local business partners and get a sticker for your bike helmet that gives you discounts at several businesses around time when you show your helmet.

Finally, Sitka will host the inaugural Alaska Walk and Bike Conference on June 4-8 at the Aspen Suites Hotel. You can get information and a tentative schedule at the Walk/Bike Alaska website, and you can register online at this site. The first two days will focus on the Smart Cycling training program from the League of American Bicyclists, which helps people be safer cyclists. The next two days feature presentations on walking and bicycling. The final day has an optional bike ride, an optional hike with harbor cruise (with fee), and a Walk/Bike Alaska organizational meeting. The cost is $40 for the full conference, and $25 each for the two-day Smart Cycling and walk/bike presentations programs.

• 2019 National Bike Month list of Sitka events (PDF flier to print and post)

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(This photo and caption appeared in the Tuesday, April 23, 2019, edition of the Daily Sitka Sentinel. It is reprinted here with permission.)

BIKE PRESENTED — Keet Gooshi Heen Elementary School third-grader Jenna Lallave, center; stands with her mother, Jenny-Lyn Lallave; 10-month-old brother, Liam Supnet; and father, Jesse Supnet, right, after being presented with a new bike by Verstovia Masonic Lodge members Noah Shepard, far left, and Darrell Windsor, second from left, recently. The Sitka Mount Verstovia Masonic Lodge is once again donating a bicycle to one student from each third-grade class, who are selected by their teachers based on the students’ behavior in class and display of good citizenship. Yellow Jersey Cycle Shop donates a helmet and lock as part of the prize. (Daily Sitka Sentinel photo by James Poulson).

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(This photo and caption appeared in the Friday, April 12, 2019, edition of the Daily Sitka Sentinel. It is reprinted here with permission.)

BIKE PRESENTED — Keet Gooshi Heen Elementary School third-grader Kayeil Jackson, stands with his father, Christopher Jackson, right, after being presented with a new bike by Verstovia Masonic Lodge members Darrell Windsor, left, and Noah Shepard recently. The Sitka Mount Verstovia Masonic Lodge is once again donating a bicycle to one student from each third-grade class, who are selected by their teachers based on the students’ behavior in class and display of good citizenship. Yellow Jersey Cycle Shop donates a helmet and lock as part of the prize. (Daily Sitka Sentinel photo by James Poulson).

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(This photo and caption appeared in the Friday, April 5, 2019, edition of the Daily Sitka Sentinel. It is reprinted here with permission.)

BIKE PRESENTED — Keet Gooshi Heen Elementary School third-grader Jax Bayne, 9, stands with Verstovia Masonic Lodge members Jerald Neel, left, and Darrell Windsor after being presented with a new bike by the Masons recently. The Sitka Mount Verstovia Masonic Lodge is once again donating a bicycle to one student from each third-grade class, who are selected by their teachers based on the students’ behavior in class and display of good citizenship. Yellow Jersey Cycle Shop donates a helmet and lock as part of the prize. (Daily Sitka Sentinel photo by James Poulson).

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