Archive for May, 2013

Bike from the Train: New Bike Rental at the Portland Transportation Center!

ZagsterI had heard this might be coming but wasn’t sure when – and now it’s here (well, in a couple of days)!

Starting June 1, 2013, bike rentals (via Zagster) will be available at the Portland Transportation Center for just $20 per day. Simply sign up at www.Zagster.com/Downeaster, get a text, unlock a bike, and ride.

A new easy option for travelers and locals alike!

Other bike rental options in the area include via:

Others, anyone?

Also, there aren’t any peer-to-peer bike rentals listed on Spinlister in the Portland area yet, so you should list yours if you’ve got one you’re not riding much!

May 30, 2013 at 2:34 pm Leave a comment

Feel Confident Riding in Traffic with a Cycling Savvy Course!

Cycling Savvy courses offered in Maine for riders of all abilities are NOT to be missed!  Here’s more on offerings this summer from the fabulous John Brooking, lead organizer of the Portland Bike Commuting Meetup:

“One of the biggest challenges we always come back to as commuters is the dreaded riding around cars. I started commuting by bike with a vague sense that I was supposed to pretty much obey the same rules as car drivers, but with zero knowledge  of how that actually played out on a bike. As I’ve learned how to co-exist with cars over the years, through a combination of experience, informal education in Internet and personal discussions, and finally in actual bicycling classes, I’ve come to regard cyclist education as one of the most important means of empowerment for a commuting cyclist. There will always be jerks on the road, and there will never be bicycle-specific infrastructure that goes to every single destination, but with just a little education, a cyclist can truly be empowered to go anywhere, even with the jerks and without the infrastructure.

That’s why my mission over the last few years has increasingly been focused on cyclist education. For the third year, I am again offering sessions of the CyclingSavvy curriculum in the Portland area. This curriculum was created in Orlando, Florida, in 2009, and now has certified instructors in 11 states including Maine.

If you need to get more comfortable with your bike, the “Train Your Bike” skills sessions will help you do that. The full package adds a classroom session to give you knowledge of the laws, crash causes and avoidance, and techniques for sharing the road respectfully but safely, followed by a leisurely-paced on-road Tour of Portland where we put all the knowledge and the skills together in the real world.

Even if you have been riding around town for some time, you will still learn something from this class. I know I did. [Editor’s Note: me, too!] Experienced and beginning riders alike testify to how CyclingSavvy has helped them. A graduate of a 2011 Portland class and Meetup member Michie O’Day writes “I took the Cycling Savvy course when I first resumed cycling after a 30-year hiatus. The most important thing I gained from it is perspective. I now realize that I’m part of the traffic moving on the road.  I practice the strategies I learned in class every time I ride.”

The CyclingSavvy tag line is “Empowerment for Unlimited Travel”, and I believe that’s true. As a transportational cyclist, this course will give you the tools to get anywhere you need to go by bike, safely and confidently. If you ride around town every day, or would like to, taking this course is one of the most important steps you can take to make your bicycle travel a better experience.”

The next course will be held June 21-22 in Portland. See here for details, registration, and evolving course offereings through the summer months.

May 23, 2013 at 8:20 pm

Why Do You Ride a Bike?

There are so many answers to the question, “Why do you ride a bike?”  I’m just back from a ride across town to do some outreach for the Portland Walking School Bus Program and saw the video below for National Bike Month/Bike to Work Day from the (San Francisco) Bay Area Bicycle Coalition.  It makes me happy.  As a year-round bike commuter I want to say every month is a great one to ride a bike, but May is definitely special, as the seasonal riders take to the streets and bikers are just everywhere, and of all stripes.

May 5, 2013 at 6:59 pm


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