Great Weather Creates High Bike to Work Day Turnout
Thousands of East Bay residents pedaled to work on Thursday, May 10 to celebrate the 24th annual Bay Area Bike to Work Day. Morning counts taken at East Bay Energizer Stations tallied 19,800 people either stopping in or rolling by. In Contra Costa alone, over 4,000 riders were counted.
The event’s 48 Energizer Stations were located next to popular bike commute routes, along regional trails, at BART and other transit stations, and in downtown areas around Contra Costa. Volunteers cheered cyclists on by giving away coffee, snacks, and free Bike to Work Day bags.
Free Bike Bells: At the 511 Contra Costa Energizer station in Walnut Creek, the East Bay Regional Park District affixed over 200 free bike bells as part of their “Share Our Trails: Ring or Call Out” trail safety and etiquette program.
A BTWD Success Story: Sometimes all it takes is one bike commute for people to realize they’d like to bike to work regularly. That’s what happened with K. Myers – she literally started cycling on Bike to Work Day and is now committed to making her commute between Concord and Walnut Creek by bicycle every Thursday to work at AAA. When asked how she would get home in the case of emergency, she said, “Uber, Lyft or GIG if it was available in Walnut Creek.” Clayton to Concord for a Decade: Steve Biggs has been bike commuting between Clayton and Concord most days for the past 10 years. Although he biked for fitness throughout much of his life, it was only 10 years ago that Bike to Work Day inspired him to try biking to work. This year’s BTWD was his 10th year anniversary as a bike commuter, so he whipped up a bike-blended smoothie on the trail.
Steve recently bought an e-bike which allowed him to commute in the driving rain this past winter. He discovered that with his e-bike he was able to travel more in step with cars on the road, making him feel safer.
During the summer Steve rides his road bike. He loves cycling to work and to the grocery store. An added bonus from cycling to work is that it has increased his fitness level for his double centuries (200 mi. rides).
Bike to School Events: Bike to Work Day wasn’t just for commuters – local students and teachers joined in the fun with 117 schools hosting Bike to School Day festivities on Thursday and throughout National Bike Month this May.
Participation Up Substantially: Participation in Bike to Work Day has increased 30% over the past five years.
Elected Officials Join on Two Wheels
In Brentwood, Mayor Robert Taylor and Brentwood Traffic Engineer, Steve Kersevan, joined the Delta Pedalers Bicycle Club at their City Park Energizer Station.
Moment of the Day
Longtime Bike to Work Day volunteer Dick Anderson (age 82), who hosted the Martinez Amtrak Energizer Station, had a story to share which seems sums up the ‘people helping people’ spirit behind Energizer Stations: A young couple got off the last train of the morning commute. They were about to transfer their boxed bikes to an AMTRAK bus to continue their journey. After I presented them with bike bags, Gatorade and bagels they offered to pay me for them. I told her that I do this strictly as a volunteer and I’d never accept any payment anyway. Since I was ready to pack up for the day, the fellow offered to take the table I borrowed from AMTRAK back for me, saving me the effort.
Wondering what Bike To Work Day looked like across Contra Costa? Click any thumbnail below to access our gallery of photos from energizer stations across the county, or view them on Facebook. We also suggest visiting the photo gallery at YouCanBikeThere.com. (Note: As energizer stations hosts send in photos, we’ll be adding them. If you have photos to share, email them to firstname.lastname@example.org!)
Walnut Creek: Iron Horse & Contra Costa Canal Trail – Hosts: 511CC, CCTA, EBRPD
Walnut Creek: Walnut Creek BART – Host: Bike Walnut Creek
Any Day Can Be Bike to Work Day
Bike To Work Day is a great time to try commuting by bike, but it doesn’t have to be the only day you give it a shot! Just remember: Biking to work is all about what works for you. Maybe the weather, or having a bike buddy, or the copious amounts of stuff you have to haul on a bike factors into your decision to cycle to work, and that’s okay!
Biking to work should be enjoyable, so pick days when riding seems fun and reasonable, then go for it. Do that and you might find yourself planning more rides to work. Just like these first-time Bike To Work Day participants.
Tips: Preparing to Bike Commute
Need help getting ready to ride to work? Preparing for a bike commute isn’t as difficult as you might think. Taking a little time to get familiar with your bike, figure out how to carry your stuff & find a good route (or even a bike buddy) can make things much easier.
Take the guesswork out of preparing with our Tips & Tricks for Bike Commuting!
Isabella Zizi: 2017 Contra Costa Bike Commuter of the Year
Bike Party is what made Isabella Zizi start riding as an adult. That’s where “I broke in my orange ’70s Peugeot and introduced it to the fun.” Those rides opened the door to her commuting by bike, and she now regularly uses her bike to commute the six miles to Gathering Tribes in Albany, a Native American arts, crafts & jewelry store.
For Isabella, biking is more than just transportation, it provides a link to her community and its history. These days she rides the Richmond Greenway, but she used to live by it before it was green. “It was just dirt and rocks, and now it has been transformed. I love the connections it provides. The edible garden, the murals, it is so cool to see everything come to life and be open to the whole community.” During rides around Richmond, she also builds connections with her neighbors and strengthens friendships with other riders.
To get further inspired, read the rest of Isabella’s story and the stories of other 2017 Bike Commuter of the Year winners at YouCanBikeThere.com!
Bike Mapper: Choose the Route Best for You
511 Contra Costa’s Bike Mapper is an innovative bicycle mapping system designed to find the flattest, most direct, or fastest route anywhere in Contra Costa. Read more about the 511CC Interactive Bike Mapper here, or check out our selection of free paper and online bike maps.
Bike to Work Day is almost here! Whether you’re already committed to riding or need a tiny bit more motivation, we’ve got the lowdown on Energizer Stations that should not be missed! Antioch
• Deer Valley Rd & Wellness Way (Kaiser Permanente Antioch Medical Center) – 6:30-9:30 am: Giving away free bike bells! Pleasant Hill
• Contra Costa Canal Trail at Gregory Lane – 7:30-8:45 am & 4-6 pm: Raffle to win a $25 gift certificate towards a fitness or dance class with Pleasant Hill Parks & Recreation.
• Pleasant Hill BART Station (near bike racks) – 6:30-9 am: Free bike tune-ups, Peet’s Coffee, bagels & schmear and other snacks. San Ramon
• Iron Horse Trail at Bollinger Canyon Rd – 6-10 am: East Bay Regional Park District will be giving away free bike bells! Walnut Creek
• Walnut Creek BART Station (near fare gates) – 6-9 am: Free bike-tune ups!
• Iron Horse Trail/Canal Trail Intersection Energizer Station – 6:30-9:30 am: Free Starbucks Coffee and bike bells!
• Iron Horse Trail/Canal Trail Intersection Energizer Station – 4-7 pm: Make your own slushy on a bike-blender! (weather permitting)