Pedal power

North metro cyclists kick into high gear for Bike To Work Day

Posted 6/26/16

Cyclists could be seen peddling furiously along city’s bike lanes and on paved trails weaving through the region’s open spaces during Bike To Work Day, celebrated nationwide June 22 and throughout the north metro region.

The cities of …

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Pedal power

North metro cyclists kick into high gear for Bike To Work Day

Posted

Cyclists could be seen peddling furiously along city’s bike lanes and on paved trails weaving through the region’s open spaces during Bike To Work Day, celebrated nationwide June 22 and throughout the north metro region.

The cities of Northglenn, Thornton and Westminster were all host to multiple “stations” — one of the top draws of Bike To Work Day, where cyclists could stop for refreshments and snacks on the way to — or from — their destinations.

Some area stations included the North Metro breakfast station at E.B. Rains Jr. Park, St. Anthony North Hospital’s breakfast station, and the Orchard Town Center Bike Party which, unlike many of the other stations, took place later in the afternoon. Stations were organized by a variety of non-profits, businesses and public entities as a way to make bicycle commuting a fun and memorable experience — and perhaps increase the number of regular bicycle commuters in the future.

“It was truly an honor to … encourage participation in healthy activities as we celebrated the nationally recognized Bike to Work Day,” said Irene Tynes, manager of outpatient and community education at St. Anthony North Health Campus. “We are thinking outside of the box on how we can engage our community in their health. This event allowed us to highlight the benefits of active living.”

Greeting early-morning visitors were many volunteers at the Front Range Community College breakfast station, including some bike repair technicians who were eager to help novice cyclists get going on the right track. One such cyclist was Roxanne Strand, an IT coordinator at Front Range who is taking advantage of her kids’ summer break to get in shape.

“Yeah, I rode into work today,” Strand said. “I try in the summer time, when I’m able, to bike to work because I don’t have to take the kids into school. I’m trying to do one to two days a week.”

On the other hand, summer vacation provided the Wards an opportunity to “bike to work” together. That is, they saw Dad on his way before turning back for a pit stop at the campus.

“We biked with my husband almost all the way to his work but then he had to leave because he had to be at work,” said Terri Ward, who was with her son, Eli, and daughter, Sarah. Ward said the trio was biking back home when they decided to stop for some fuel. “I’m getting a breakfast burrito.”

For Bud Bexley, who lives across the street from the Westminster college campus, cycling to work is old hat. But, he said, he likes that Bike To Work Day promotes good health and participation.

And for partner organizations like Smart Commute, a transportation management organization serving the north metro Denver area, the event serves as a way to remind residents of transportation alternatives that can help reduce traffic while improving health.

John Orr, water resources administrator with the City of Thornton, the absence of traffic is just one of the benefits of commuting by bike.

“The best thing about my commute is the time along Clear Creek and Farmers Highline Canal — no vehicle traffic, watching the seasons change over the months, and having a great view of the changing Colorado weather over the Front Range,” he said.

Even employers, like Lake Arbor Automotive and Truck in Westminster, get in on the action for the nationally celebrated event.

“We do this every year, starting at Stratford Lakes in Westminster, taking the open space trails down around to the shop at 9146 Marshall Place in Westminster,” said Steve Caulk. “We finish up … with a breakfast of lox-and-bagels, fruit and yogurt.”

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