Archive for February, 2021

The Sitka Cycling Club will host a monthly steering committee at noon on Thursday, Feb. 25, using Zoom. This meeting is open to the general public.

Meeting topics include visioning for the new year (where do we want to be at this time next year), a look at our current status and realities, a chance to brainstorm club goals for 2021, an evaluation and selection of broad paths forward, a review of our recent Sitka mountain bike trail plan survey results and discussion about our upcoming trail plan, an update on the Salty Spoke Bike Cooperative, setting some monthly club rides starting in April, a discussion of steering club committee roles and recruitment of new members (we need a VP), a discussion of club membership and possibly adding annual dues, and setting our next meeting for March. We also might start planning National Bike Month events for May.

For those wanting to participate in the meeting, contact Doug Osborne at 738-8734 or douglaso@searhc.org for the meeting log-in info.

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Sitka’s weather on International Winter Bike To Work Day, Friday, Feb. 12, was cold and sunny, with no real moisture in about a week, which may have helped Sitka finish in the top 100 in the 2021 overall standings. Sitka beat several cities with more than a million people.

Sitka finished in a 13-way tie for 98th overall, with seven points (riders who recorded their rides on the international website). That put Sitka ahead of several larger communities around the world, such as Talinn, Estonia; Warsaw, Poland; Hannover, Germany; Barcelona, Spain; and Vienna, Austria. Communities earned points for the number of cyclists who rode and registered their rides with the International Winter Bike To Work Day website. The only other Alaska community among the top-250 places in the standings was Anchorage, which was in a 117-way tie for 230th place with two points.

Sweden dominated the top spots in the standings, with four cities in the top five. Linköping was the 2021 winner with 412 points, followed by 2020 overall winner Uppsala with 352 points. In third place was Umeå with 253 points, while Göteborg and Ismir, Turkey, tied for fourth place with 218 points. Rounding out the top-10 places in the standings were three-time winner (2015-17) Zagreb, Croatia, in sixth with 191 points; Montréal, Quebec, Canada, in seventh place with 159 points; 2014 winner Oulu, Finland, in eighth place with 155 points; and two more Swedish cities with Stockholm in ninth place with 132 points and Falun in 10th place with 127 points. Other former champions included 2019 champion Denver, Colorado, USA, in a tie for 65th place with 12 points; 2018 champion Novi Sad, Serbia, in a tie for 347th place with one point; and 2013 champion Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada in a tie for 32nd place with 27 points. (In 2013 the event was almost entirely Canadian and it didn’t become a true international event until 2014.)

There were 93 communities from the United States that show up in the standings. The top five United State cities in the standings were Boulder, Colo., in a tie for 29th place with 32 points (the top American city); Traverse City, Mich., in a tie for 32nd place with 27 points; Denver in a tie for 65th place with 12 points; and Olympia, Wash., and Lincoln, Neb., both in a tie for 76th place with 10 points. Sitka, in its tie for 98th place with seven points, was the sixth American city. Other than Anchorage, no other Alaska communities showed up in the standings.

Participants in Sitka could enter a drawing at Yellow Jersey Cycle Shop on Feb. 12 when they recorded their rides, which could include loops around town due to so many people being out of work or working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. James Poulson won a reflective rain jacket from SEARHC, Greg George won a Mako Nite Rider headlight from Yellow Jersey Cycle Shop, Davey Lubin won a Serfas Seat-Stay tail light from Yellow Jersey, Sharyn Ferrick won a Herrmans Safety Wing reflector from Yellow Jersey, Doug Osborne won a Sayre reflective band, and Ronan George won a Cycloq mounted bike holder (for the wall) from an anonymous donor. Thank you to all who donated prizes.

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Photo by Lione Clare

The Harry Race Soda Fountain, which donates its tips to a local nonprofit organization each month, will pay it forward to the Salty Spoke Bicycle Cooperative in February.

The Salty Spoke is a membership cooperative (with a sliding fee based on income) located in the back of the Hames Athletic and Wellness Center, providing bicycle maintenance and classes on bike repair. It also helps repair older bikes for lower-income riders, especially kids. The Salty Spoke opened in October 2019 and is usually open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays.

“We are beyond excited to hear that Harry Race Soda Fountain has selected us to receive their soda fountain tips this month,” Salty Spoke co-coordinator Alyssa Russell said. “As a budding cooperative, this support from our community means so much to us, and we are excited to put the funds towards our youth education program. Thank you Harry Race.”

The Salty Spoke will host three bike maintenance workshops from 11 a.m. to noon on the last three Saturdays in February (Feb. 13, 20, and 27). Subjects covered likely will include routine chain maintenance, rust prevention techniques, safety checks, prevention techniques, and brake adjustments.

The workshops are $20 for the general public and free for Salty Spoke members. Due to COVID-19 concerns, the workshops are capped at eight participants and masks and social distancing are required. For more details, contact the Salty Spoke at thesaltyspoke@gmail.com.

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