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The Sitka Cycling Club will host a monthly steering committee at noon on Friday, July 22, grabbing lunch at Beak Restaurant and eating it under the covered patio at the Salty Spoke Bicycle Co-op next door. This meeting is open to the general public. Don’t forget Beak is one of our Bicycle Benefits partners, so bring your bike helmets and ride your bikes for a discount.

Agenda topics include a review of the 2022 Sitka Cycling Club goals and how we are meeting them; a status report on membership, finances, etc.; a discussion about our single-track bike trail construction and Monday trail-building work parties; an update on our new pump track project; a discussion on the Walk, Bike, Win! downtown commuter challenge; discussion about monthly club bike rides; and a discussion and decision on upcoming bike parking efforts in the downtown area.

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

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Volunteers help spread rock and gravel on new single-track mountain bike trails off the Sitka Cross Trail earlier this summer.
PHOTO BY LIONE CLARE

The Sitka Cycling Club will host a monthly steering committee at noon on Friday, June 17, at the Mean Queen (upstairs). This meeting is open to the general public, and it’s the first in-person meeting in two years. Don’t forget the Mean Queen is one of our Bicycle Benefits partners, so bring your bike helmets and ride your bikes for a discount.

Agenda topics include a review of the 2022 Sitka Cycling Club goals and how we are meeting them; a status report on membership, finances, etc.; a discussion about our single-track bike trail construction and Monday trail-building work parties; an update on our new pump track project; a discussion on the Walk, Bike, Win! downtown commuter challenge; discussion about monthly club bike rides; and a discussion and decision on upcoming bike parking efforts in the downtown area.

On Saturday, June 18, the club will host its monthly open ride starting at 1 p.m.  Cyclists will meet at the Salty Spoke bike co-op (1 Lincoln Street) and decide then on the route.

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

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The expected record year of tourists is making Sitka look for ways to reduce traffic downtown by encouraging more people to commute by biking or walking.

But when you bicycle to work, you need a good, safe place to park your bike. You want a good, secure place to lock the bike; you want a covered shelter to protect against rain; and you want the bike parking to be close to your destination.

As part of the Walk, Bike, Win! downtown commuter challenge this summer, we are installing new bike racks to help you get physically active in Sitka. Click this link to help us decide where Sitkans most need bike racks in the downtown area.

Not sure where Sitka already has bike parking, check out this online map compiled by Joshua Houston. Note, some places on this map may have older, fender-bender style bike racks that need to be upgraded to newer racks that meet industry standards.

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National Bike To Work Week is May 16-20, and Sitka residents are encouraged to get on their bikes and ride this week. Also, Friday, May 20, is National Bike To Work Day.

Forty percent of people have commutes of less than two miles, which makes cycling to work about as time-consuming as driving. Not only is biking to work healthy, but it reduces pollution in the environment. Commuting by bike also is a great way to jump-start your day with a short workout.

This year, those cyclists who ride their bike to work, school or on errands during National Bike To Work Week can fill out tickets at Yellow Jersey Cycle Shop for a chance to win prizes, including a $100 gift certificate from Yellow Jersey and other prizes possible. The prize drawing will be at the Julie Hughes Triathlon on Saturday, May 21. You fill in one ticket for each trip to work or home by bike.

Don’t forget to log your biking and walking commutes downtown in the Walk, Bike, Win! downtown commuter challenge, where you also can win prizes..

This year, we’ll hold our annual Worldwide Ride of Silence bike ride and blessing of the bikes event. Meet at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 18, at the Salty Spoke bicycle cooperative’s new location (1 Lincoln Street, the small building next to the historic Cable House) for a blessing of the bikes with local clergy. We’ll have a short ride of silence at 7 p.m.

On National Bike To Work Day on Friday, May 20, and the Sitka Cycling Club invites bike riders to join us for our monthly Sitka Cycling Club meeting from noon to 1 p.m. over Zoom. For details an to get a meeting link, contact Doug Osborne at douglaso@searhc.org or 907-738-8734.

In 2016, Sitka found out it had been upgraded to a Silver level designation in the Bicycle Friendly Community program, and we renewed that designation in 2020. We were Alaska’s first Bicycle Friendly Community in 2008, and the first to renew in 2012, earning a Bronze award both times. In 2016, the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) Sitka Campus earned a renewal of its Bronze award in the Bicycle Friendly Business program (it originally won the designation in 2011).

For more information, contact Doug Osborne at 907-738-8734 or Charles Bingham at 907-623-7660.

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The 38th running, biking and swimming of the Julie Hughes Triathlon starts at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 21, at Blatchley Middle School. This is the first full triathlon after two years of people completing the course on their own because of Covid-19 restrictions.

The event is a fundraiser for the Sitka Cancer Survivors Society and honors the memory of a young Sitka woman who passed away from leukemia at the age of 15. (Click here for an April 2013 Capital City Weekly article about Julie Hughes.) Day-of-race registration ends at 8 a.m., followed by a pre-race briefing, and the race starts at 8:30 a.m. The bike staging area opens at 7:15 a.m.

JulieHughesTriathlon

For the 10th straight year, the Baranof Barracudas Swim Club is organizing the race, having taken over event hosting duties from the Hughes family. Registration takes place online at http://juliehughestri.com/. The entry fee is $40 per person ($20 per child age 17 or younger), and people can enter as individuals or teams. Day-of-race registrations are $50 for adults and $20 for children. Participants are encouraged to have bike safety checks done at Yellow Jersey Cycle Shop before the race.

The course is a five-mile run from Blatchley Middle School to the U.S. Coast Guard-Air Station Sitka gate and back, a 14-mile bike ride from Blatchley to the Starrigavan Recreation Area at the end of Halibut Point Road and back, and a 1,000-yard swim at the Blatchley Middle School swimming pool. There is a shorter course available for participants who are age 12 or younger (1.5-mile run, six-mile bike, 500-yard swim).

For more information, contact Kevin Knox at 907-738-4664, or send an e-mail to bbsc.sitka@gmail.com.

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With a record number of cruise ship visitors expected in Sitka this summer, the new Walk, Bike, Win! downtown commuter challenge will help reduce car traffic while also offering Sitka residents a fitness challenge.

Walk, Bike, Win! starts on Saturday, May 7, which is the first day when downtown streets are closed to cars because more than 3,000 cruise ship passengers are expected in Sitka that day. The contest runs through Thursday, Sept. 29, which is when the last large cruise ship of the season is scheduled.

This free challenge is co-sponsored by Visit Sitka, the Greater Sitka Chamber of Commerce, the City and Borough of Sitka, Sitka Conservation Society, the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC), Sitka Trail Works, and the Sitka Cycling Club.

So how does the challenge work?

Sitka residents first need to register by going to the online registration link and submitting name and email, etc. Next, any time you walk or bike to a destination in the blue zone of this downtown map, record the trip and earn points. You earn points for any human-powered trip downtown, the time of the trip, and if it’s on a Lincoln Street closure day, plus there are bonus points for people who are new to active transportation.

There are a variety of prizes available from local merchants, including many that participate in the Bicycle Benefits program. The first 150 people to hit three points win gift cards from the Backdoor Cafe, Highliner Coffee, Wild Flower Cafe, Sitka Flowers and Chocolate Moose, and Fisheye Coffee. If you earn 25 points you get a gift card to the Sitka Local Foods Network farm stand at the Sitka Farmers Market or Old Harbor Books. If you earn 75 points you win a gift card from BEAK Restaurant or Mean Queen. For 150 points you win a gift card to Yellow Jersey Cycle Shop, Russell’s, or Work and Rugged Gear/Mountain Miss.

Those who earn 200 points will be entered into a grand prize drawing for $100 cash plus your choice of a three-month membership at the Hames Athletic and Wellness Center, two tickets on a 2022-23 Sitka Trail Works boat trip hike, or a one-year membership at the Salty Spoke Bicycle Cooperative.

People can pick up their prizes at the front desk of the Planning Department at City Hall. Every Friday, Sitka Trail Works will send out an email that announces that week’s prize winners. If you need a paper copy to log your trips, click this link and download it.

For more information, Doug Osborne at 966-8674 or douglaso@searhc.org.

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The Salty Spoke Bicycle Cooperative will be able to spread out in its new space, which is larger, more accessible, and heated.

After spending much of the weekend moving, the Salty Spoke will host an open house from 10 a.m. to noon on Sunday, April 17, at its new location of 1 Lincoln Street, the small building that used to house Devil Fish Gallery next to the historic Cable House with KCAW-Raven Radio and Beak Restaurant.

In addition to the open house, Charlie Lowell of the Susitna Bicycle Institute in Anchorage will teach a basic bicycle mechanics workshop from 12:30-4:30 p.m. on Sunday. The workshop is pay-what-you-can, with a suggested donation of $25 for Salty Spoke members and $40 for non-members.

The new space is partially funded by a grant from the Outride Fund, for mentoring rural Alaska youth bike mechanics. The Salty Spoke’s old space was in the back of the Hames Athletic and Wellness Center, but the co-op had outgrown that space and needed more room.

From left, Joel Hanson and Alyssa Russell of the Salty Spoke Bicycle Cooperative and Charlie Lowell of the Susitna Bicycle Institute pose after completing the Salty Spoke’s move to its new location. There will be an open house and Charlie will teach a basic bike mechanics workshop on Sunday, April 17.

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The Sitka Cycling Club and Salty Spoke Bicycle Co-op will host a Bikes at the Beak gathering from 8-9 p.m. on Thursday, April 14, at Beak Restaurant.

This is an event featuring dinner, dessert, drinks, and information sharing about bike events in Sitka. Dinner is served until 8:30 p.m.

Discussion topics include the recent single-track bike trails built off the Cross Trail over the past two years; a discussion of what’s happening with the Salty Spoke Bicycle Cooperative; our plans to build a new pump track bike course by the Turnaround; and a roundup of upcoming bike events in Sitka for National Bike Month in May.

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The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) invites Southeast Alaskans to join in a physical activity event in April 2022. This free, all-ages, inclusive program starts Friday, April 1, and runs through Friday, April 29. It is available to everyone in Southeast Alaska.

Spring is here and we are creating a community of people who want to enhance their individual fitness, while simultaneously generating a donation to Southeast Alaska Independent Living (SAIL). You can hike, bike, roll, or walk … just move.

  • Every week you will make a fitness goal and then track it. It could be tracking your steps, minutes outside, miles logged – whatever motivates you.
  • One week later you will receive an email with instructions to submit the percentage of your goal you achieved. This will act as your submission into the weekly drawing.
  • The more weeks you participate, the better chances you have to win big. If you log all four weeks, SEARHC will make a donation in your honor to SAIL. Ready to go? Complete the steps below.

STEPS TO PARTICIPATE:

  1. Register here for the program.
  2. Download the paper tracker OR use your own way of tracking your steps, minutes outside, or miles logged.
    1. The paper trackers do not need to be submitted. This is a resource for you to track.
  3. On April 1 – Start Tracking

For more information, please contact Doug Osborne at douglaso@search.org or 907-966-8674.

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

With the new tourism plan, the club has $10,000 for downtown bike parking and $12,000 for an incentive program to get people commuting by bike or on foot. Meeting topics include an update on a recent grant application to the Crossett Fund for the pump track project and Salty Spoke Bicycle Co-op, our first monthly group bike ride of the season on Saturday, a new fitness challenge for April, planning for National Bike Month in May, and more. We also will set the date for our next meeting for April.

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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