I had the wonderful opportunity to be in Vancouver, Canada for the first two weeks of bike month (June). AND, Wow what an experience!! During my trip out to the West coast I participated in Velopalooza bike rides and met with some of Vancouver’s most avid cyclists. Let me start this blog with “I LOVE VANCOUVER!”
I landed in Vancouver at about 9:00am and my good friend Eli was not a minute too late to pick me up. After my long snooze on my early West Jet flight I was ready to jump right into action. I checked into my accommodations and made my way to meet-up with Mia Kohout from Momentum Magazine and Talia Erickson from the Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition (VACC) at the Momentum Magazine sponsored bike month celebration station at the corner of Richards and Dunsmuir on the separated bike lane. The weather was not cooperating with my plans and obviously the plans of those who organized the bike station as it was pouring rain! “Puking!” as they say in Whistler. I was quite surprised and pleased to see that even in this torrential downpour people were still riding their bikes to work. Now that’s dedication! At the Momentum Station, Mia, Talia and the team stayed optimistic and shared information with those cyclists who stopped in to say hello, collect information about bike month and jump under the tent to get out of the rain. These cyclists were decked out in weather proof gear such as helmet covers, rain jackets and even shoe covers. There are so many great accessories available for rainy days; all you need to do is ask your local bike shop to recommend weather proof gear to withstand cold and rain.
I am happy and proud of the local cyclists in Vancouver who bike to work, rain or shine. I love rain and I love my bike but when the sky is puking water, I’m not one to jump on my bike enthusiastically and pedal my little heart through Toronto city pot holes which make the rain come at you from underneath too. If safety and rain concern you too, read our blog riding in the rain | bicycle safety for tips on how to arrive at work safe and dry. High-five to those who are brave enough to get on their bikes, and be safe out there!
The next day the sun came out, the sky was blue. Just in time for the ‘bike to work’ week wrap up barbeque party. The barbeque featured a local band that was great entertainment, check out the video!
The VACC was offering information and the opportunity to win a free Maya Cycle trailer which was being raffled away to a lucky winner. Nicole Jacobson from Vancouver won the trailer, CONGRATULATIONS NICOLE!
On Wednesday June 8th, I finally got to participate in the Velopalooza farmer’s market bike ride. My friend Eli and I rode into the city with our Maya Cycle bike trailers to help promote what a great product Maya Cycle is, especially for bike rides such as this one. After making our way around the seawall, the ride ended up at the local farmers market. We parked our bikes in the bicycle valet parking provided for free by the Better Environment Sound Transportation group (BEST). I don’t know about you, but I thought this was AWESOME! I love convenience!! I did some shopping at the market and then took my bike from the safety of the bicycle valet and cycled my merry way home.
I had the opportunity to meet with the organizers of this bicycle valet, Robin Harvey and Steve Beck from BEST. Maya Cycle is now partnering with BEST to help promote bike riding as one of the best forms of transportation. A Maya Cycle trailer has been donated to BEST to help support the organization and provide incentive for people of Vancouver to ride their bikes.
Sunday morning finally came the Velopalooza cargo bike ride. This was interesting and great fun! My friend Eli and I rolled out to join the many different kinds of cargo bikes that people are riding around the streets of Vancouver. There we got to meet Nicole, the winner of the Maya Cycle bicycle cargo trailer from the VACC bike to work week bbq wrap up party. I was so pleased to hear that Nicole loves the bike trailer and was super excited to have won it! Her partner just started a mobile painting company, and with his cargo bike and her new Maya Cycle bicycle trailer, they have a good start for their small business. Good luck to them!
We saw many different bikes, cargo bikes and bicycle trailers. Maya Cycle stood out beautifully as one of the best cargo carrying options on the market. I was actually surprised that not one person in this large group of cargo bikes and trailers had a B.O.B trailer. But I was happy to see that there was three of us with a Maya Cycle bicycle trailer! Check out the video below, one word that defines the event: traffic!
Tuesday June 14th my trip came to an end and I returned to Toronto happy with all my experiences and adventures. Vancouver is definitely the city leading the Canadian bicycle industry, with dedicated cyclists and a supportive government that invests in the infrastructure that promotes safe cycling. Till next time Van!