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Archive for August, 2019

 

More than 50 cyclists braved the rain as they gathered Saturday for a dedication ceremony for Sitka’s new public FixIt station and the Sitka Half Century 50-mile bike ride, capping off a busy week of cycling activities in Sitka.

The new Dero FixIt station, located at the corner of Lincoln Street and Harbor/Lake streets, was donated to Sitka by CRW Engineering Group of Anchorage, which has placed seven FixIt stations around the state as part of the company’s effort to promote active transportation. Brian Looney, an engineer with CRW, came to Sitka to help install the FixIt station, and during the ceremony placed a Sitka Cycling Club sticker on the FixIt station. Before the ceremony, Brian showed how a cyclist can scan the QR code on the FixIt station to access video tutorials on how to make different bike repairs.

The Sitka Half Century actually featured rides of four different lengths — a seven-miler to Whale Park and back to town for families, a 15-miler to Blue Lake and back to town, a 30-miler to Green Lake and back to town, and a 50-miler to Green Lake and back to Starrigavan (with a short trip up the Nelson Logging Road) and then back to town. There were more than 50 cyclists, including three pulling trailers with kids, who took part in one of the four rides.

Earlier in the week, Scott Menzies and Charlie Lowell of the Susitna Bicycle Institute in Anchorage gave a 40-hour intensive training in bike mechanics to six Sitkans who will work at the new Sitka bicycle co-op at the Hames Athletic and Wellness Center opening later this fall. Scott and Charlie also taught a three-hour Introduction to Basic Bicycle Maintenance workshop on Thursday night at the University of Alaska Southeast Sitka Campus hangar. During the dedication ceremony for the FixIt station, Charlie gave a short demonstration on how to use the various bike tools included with the unit.

A slideshow of scenes from Saturday’s dedication ceremony and the Sitka Half Century are posted below.

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Thursday night, Aug. 22, more than a dozen Sitka cyclists gathered for a three-hour Introduction to Basic Bicycle Maintenance class held in the hangar at the University of Alaska Southeast Sitka Campus.

The class was taught by Scott Menzies and Charlie Lowell of the nonprofit Susitna Bicycle Institute in Anchorage, and it cost students $30. Scott and Charlie were in town doing an intensive training for young bike mechanics at the soon-to-open Sitka bicycle co-op.

In the class students learned about the A-B-C’s of bicycle maintenance (Air, Brakes, Crank/Chain), as well has how to use some of the basic tools that will be available when the new Sitka Bike co-op opens. They also learned how routine bicycle maintenance not only prolongs the life of your bike, but also makes for a safer ride. The class was hands-on, and students brought their own bikes to work on during the class.

A photo slideshow of the class is posted below.

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Six Sitka cyclists recently went through a 40-hour intensive training in bike mechanics in preparation for the opening of the new Sitka bicycle co-op later this fall. The training took place in studio at the Yaw Art Center building on the Sitka Fine Arts Camp campus.

The cyclists — Jake Falvey, Alex Bayne, Alyssa Russell, Joel Hanson, Austin Fitka and Kobi Weiland — were trained this past week by Scott Menzies and Charlie Lowell of the nonprofit Susitna Bicycle Institute from Anchorage. In addition, they also worked on helping set up the new co-op space in a room leased at the Hames Athletic and Wellness Center.

The new bike co-op hasn’t set an official opening date and hours yet, but there probably will be some of the mechanics working in the shop in September as they try to improve their skills. The grand opening probably won’t happen until November, Sitka Cycling Club president Doug Osborne said. The bike co-op also has yet to decide on its official name.

For more information about the Sitka bicycle co-op, contact Doug Osborne at 738-8734 or douglaso@searhc.org.

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Charlie Lowell of the Susitna Bicycle Institute demonstrates how to oil a bike chain during a basic bike mechanics workshop during the Alaska Walk and Bike Conference held June 4-8, 2019, in Sitka. Charlie and Scott Menzies of the Susitna Bicycle Institute will host an introduction to basic bike maintenance workshop from 6-9 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 22, at UAS-Sitka Campus.

Have you ever been on a long bike ride and your back tire flatted? Did you know how to fix the tire? How about those brakes? Are they feeling a bit squishy?

Learn how to fix these and other common bike maintenance issues during an Introduction to Basic Bicycle Maintenance workshop from 6-9 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 22, at the hangar at the University of Alaska Southeast-Sitka Campus. The class will be taught by Charlie Lowell and Scott Menzies of the Susitna Bicycle Institute, who are in town that week helping create a Sitka bicycle co-op. This is a great way to learn how to make sure your bike is safe to ride.

The Susitna Bicycle Institute is a nonprofit bike school in Anchorage that teaches people about bike maintenance and even certifies people as bike mechanics. It has taken its message on the road, leading classes in Nome and other Alaska communities.

The class costs $30 per person (cash or check, made out to Sitka Cycling Club, only). People should bring their own bikes to this hands-on class.

For more information, contact Emma Klein at 966-8785 or emmak@searhc.org.

 

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Do you think you can handle riding your bike 50 miles? The Sitka Cycling Club will host its inaugural Sitka Half-Century Ride on Saturday, Aug. 24, and you’re welcome to join in the fun. Don’t think you’re up for riding 50 miles? We also have some shorter rides that day.

Meet at 9 a.m. by the traffic light at Lincoln and Lake streets to register and to attend a dedication ribbon-cutting for our new public Fixit bike repair station at the corner. The Fixit station is being donated to Sitka cyclists by CRW Engineering Group of Anchorage. Brian Looney will be in town representing CRW.

Charlie Lowell and Scott Menzies of the Susitna Bicycle Institute in Anchorage, who will be in town that week teaching bike maintenance classes and helping Sitka start a bike co-op, will demonstrate how to use the tools at the new Fixit station from 9:10-9:25 a.m., and the Fixit station dedication ceremony takes place at 9:25 a.m.

The rides start at 9:30 a.m., and they include a family ride to Whale Park and back to town (about seven miles), a ride to Blue Lake and back (about 15 miles), a ride to Green Lake and back (about 30 miles), and the whole ride of 50 miles (which includes a ride to Starrigavan after the ride to Green Lake). A map of the ride is shown on the event flier. The ride is free, but we do ask all participants to sign a liability waiver and to wear bike helmets.

For more information, contact Doug Osborne at douglaso@searhc.org or 738-8734.

 

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The Sitka Cycling Club (formerly known as the Sitka Bicycle Friendly Community Coalition) will hold its monthly meeting from 4-5 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 7, at the Sitka Public Library. This meeting is open to all interested folks.

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; a discussion about what we can do to make Sitka more bicycle friendly (such as the installation of a new FixIt bike repair station downtown in August, donated to Sitka by CRW Engineering Group of Anchorage); a discussion of monthly club bike rides later this summer; a discussion of the inaugural Sitka Half-Century (a 50-mile bike ride on Aug. 24); the launch of a bike co-op/school, which includes an adult bike mechanics class on Aug. 22; planning for the family friendly Kidical Mass bike ride in September; and other topics.

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

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