Bike Valet @Oyster Festival

BikeValet_OysterFest

We are huge fans of SLO County’s local seafood, and are thrilled to host our Bike Valet at the 2nd Annual Central Coast Oyster Festival overlooking the spectacular Morro Bay!

SHUCK YEAH! The ‘one of a kind’ Central Coast Oyster & Music Festival has been Voted by Fox News as #4 of the top ten Oyster Festivals in the nation and the largest Oyster Festival on the West Coast! You will not want to miss out!

Held again at the Morro Bay Golf Course, overlooking the Oyster Farm and Morro Bay Rock. The Morro Bay Oyster Company will provide succulent oysters, which are some of the most renowned oysters on the west coast. In addition to oysters, alternative food choices will also be provided.

Ride your bike and park with us at the Bike Valet to get there and park your bike for free!

When: Saturday October 19, 12:00 – 8:00 pm
Where: Morro Bay Golf Course, 201 State Park Road, Morro Bay (map)

For more information and tickets, visit the Oyster Festival online. Use the special coupon code “bike” for $4 off tickets!

ccof2013Posteredit

Update: Highway One Chip Seal Treatment

Last year, Caltrans used a larger than normal aggregate to resurface a portion of the world renowned Highway One route north of Cambria. As part of this resurfacing, the roadway became incredibly rough for bicycles and kicked up small rocks into the path of both bicycle riders and motorists. This safety issue has made its way from local to state to national news through popular bicycle groups.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Soon, thanks to the efforts of numerous advocacy groups, this 20 mile section of roadway will be remedied to provide sufficient smoothing! After a series of test treatments as part of a study by the UC Davis Pavement Research Center, a sand seal will be applied to a portion of the roadway before moving forward with the remaining roadway. The test sand seal is set to be applied in 3-4 weeks.

From an official Caltrans statement:

“I am happy to announce through our association with the UC Davis Pavement Research Center and input from the cycling community, Caltrans is preparing to begin work on Hwy. 1. With this fact based decision we are now moving forward with finding a solution for resurfacing Highway 1.  While the full report continues to undergo review, enough information is available to begin work on Highway 1,” said Caltrans District 5 Director Tim Gubbins.

The results of this study indicate a sand seal treatment is expected to be effective in smoothing the surface of Highway 1.  Caltrans will apply a sand treatment to a short test section of Highway 1.  A sand seal is a sprayed application of asphalt emulsion followed by a covering of clean sand or fine aggregate.

This is great news for coastal riders, upcoming fundraising rides which use this beautiful  route, and motorists who don’t want rocks flung at their windshields.

The selection of this surface treatment follows work by the UC Davis Pavement Research Center and Caltrans that tested eight sections of surface treatment on State Route 198 in Monterey County. 

A sand seal was applied to one of the test sections and resulted in an improvement on the highway, according to feedback from cyclists and specialized equipment used to measure the texture of the highway.

Your Bicycle Coalition will be sure to keep you up to date as the process moves forward. In the meantime more news on the subject is available online for your review:

California By Bike Summit

We are at an exciting and powerful moment in the history of bicycle advocacy in our state. Governor Brown has provided more money than ever for active transportation infrastructure and he’s given us a blank slate regarding rules on how to spend it. Are we prepared to make the most of this opportunity?

CAbikeSummit2013

Our statewide partners, the California Bicycle Coalition, are hosting an incredible summit in November to address the future of bicycles in the state. Aimed at brining bicycle culture, infrastructure and excitement to all corners of the golden state, the California by Bike Summit is guaranteed to inspire!

130601-1063

On November 7-10 in Oakland, CA, California by Bike will bring people together so that we can say, “Yes, we can.”  This is a gathering of more than just bike advocates and the bike industry, but leading bike-minded people in transit, urban planning, health, design, technology, and tourism as we share, envision, connect and collaborate on how to best improve biking in California.

Your Bicycle Coalition will be in attendance to learn and share from others, with the central coast having many recent victories for bicycles. We are also excited to hear what other similar parts of the state are doing to make bicycle riding better in their communities. We’d love to see you there as we all continue to work together to making places better for bicycles!

When: November 7-10, 2013
Where:  685 14th St, Oakland, CA (map)

For more information, to register and receive early-bird registration (ends September 30!) visit the California by Bike Summit online here.

Mud Mash Benefits the Bicycle Coalition!

Our friends at All Out Events are hosting the 4th annual Mud Mash on October 26 – and the Bicycle Coalition is receiving a portion of the proceeds!

What is a Mud Mash?
It’s an epic course made of obstacles inspired by the military, rock climbing, nature, and more on a 5k run with hundreds of participants. The goal is to have fun, be active, and push yourself on the adventure course!

Photo by Kaori Photography

Photo by Kaori Photography

How do I support the Bicycle Coalition?
Register as a group in the “Industry Competition” and the Bicycle Coalition receives some of the proceeds!

What is the “Industry Competition”?
It’s not just against yourself and other teams, race against your industry! The awesome organizers of the Mud Mash have made it easy to register for a group of 5 (for the price of 4) in the “Industry Competition”. It’s a great way to get your groups name out there and secure bragging rights for next year!

1. Get five people together from your organization
2. Register and get five people for the price of four in the 5k event
3. Let them know what industry you are in (ex: colleges, wineries, non-profits, etc)

MudMash2013_FacebookWe are excited to be a part of this unique Central Coast event, and can’t wait to see everyone climbing, crawling, running and dragging themselves through the mud-infested course!

When: Saturday October 26, 7:00-8:30 am check-in … 9:00 first wave begins
Where: Laguna Lake Park, SLO


For more information,
visit the Mud Mash online.

Advocacy Alert: 3ft Passing Bill on Governor Brown’s Desk

Our statewide partners at the California Bicycle Coalition are one step closer to victory in their latest Give Me 3 campaign.

Give Me 3 is a Bill to get drivers to give a safe three feet of clearance when passing a bicycle rider. Assembly Bill 1371 amends the Vehicle Code to specify three feet as the safe passing distance. Twenty-one other states have enacted similar legislation.

3-feet-poster

The bill has been passed by the California State Assembly and as of August 27th, 2013 it passed the Senate on a 31-7 vote! Now it sits on the Governor’s desk awaiting final approval.

The legislation would “require a driver to pass a bicycle at a distance of at least three feet”, but when drivers cannot leave that much room due to road conditions they must slow to “a reasonable and prudent speed” and pass only if doing so would not endanger the cyclist’s safety. A violation would be punishable by fines starting at $35. It also sets a base fine of $220 (that’s $959 once court fees and other expenses are added) for injuring a bicycle rider in violation of this statute.

This current version of the bill is an attempt to address the concerns raised by the governor in vetoing previous 3-foot passing bills over the past two legislative sessions. This has given him the distinction of becoming only the second governor to do so – joining Texas’ Rick Perry.

Over 40% of fatal bicycle collisions are caused by motorists passing unsafely. And yet, Governor Brown has vetoed CalBike’s previous two “3 foot” bills. With your help today, the third time could be the charm.

AB 1371, if signed into law by the governor, could become an effective educational tool in making roads safer for all users. Please send a note urging Governor Jerry Brown to pass this important piece of legislation, and require California drivers to give a safe distance when they pass you on your bicycle.

Loads of Kid Friendly Bike Events Coming Up!

In the next few days, there are quite a few opportunities for bicycle fun for kids in SLO County!

Your Bicycle Coalition is the host of Kidical Mass and provides free helmet fits for participants of both Bike Rodeos, which focus on bicycle education and skills practice for kids, just in time for the school year. All events are free to attend! Check them out below.

Kidical Mass

When: Thursday September 5, 2013 … 5:30 pm
Where: Mitchell Park, SLO (for a brief safety talk before we ride) (map)

Kidical Mass September 5, 2013The Last Kidical Mass of 2013 with a UNICORN theme! Bright white horns, magical sparkles, and mythical animals are welcome as we ride through downtown, to share in the joy of riding bicycles.

We hope to see you for the fun before we end in the Mission Plaza, in time to enjoy the Thursday night Farmers Market!

SLO Bike Rodeo

When: Saturday September 7, 2013 … 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Where: Hawthorne Elementary School, SLO (map)

edit_IMG_7204

This annual Bike Rodeo has everything kids need to practice their riding skills! A full safety town to ride through, helmet fit to make sure heads are properly protected, mechanic stations to tune up bikes, and more.

Plus, it’s free! Join us for riding skills, and then follow it up with a stunt show spectacular at 2:00.

Kidz Ride Paso

When: Sunday September 8, 2013 … 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
Where: Larry Moore Park, Paso Robles (map)

edit_IMG_7266

This family-oriented event is designed for kids ages 4-13 to have fun, improve their bike handling skills, and learn bike safety and etiquette.

Kids and their parents can “take to the road” on a course through the park to try out their new safety skills. Event includes a bike & helmet safety check and goody bag to all kids.

Bicycle Barriers Survey

BikeBarriersSurveyIn order to know more about bicycles in SLO County, we have been working with the San Luis Obispo Council of Governments (SLOCOG) on a “Bicycle Barriers Survey“, which is now available online for your input!

We encourage you to take the survey, regardless of your bicycle riding habits.

  • Do you want to ride more, but are deterred by motorists? Take the survey.
  • Do you ride 40 miles everyday? Take the survey.
  • Do your children not ride to school because it is too difficult? Take the survey.
  • Do you not ride a bicycle at all? Take the survey.

The purpose of the survey is to understand how people ride bicycles in SLO County, what types of barriers exist prevent people from riding, how we can make riding better, and more.

Take the survey and share it with your friends and neighbors so we can help make SLO County better for bicycles! View it here.

This online survey is a follow-up to a previous survey that was mailed to a random sampling of the community and will be used to further inform SLOCOG about San Luis Obispo County residents’ views and priorities for the region. It was funded by SLOCOG and the Air Pollution Control District and carried out by the San Luis Obispo County Bicycle Coalition. Data gathered from the mailed survey will be made available to the public on the SLOCOG website in August 2013 and used to develop programming and infrastructure investment priorities.

Bike Theft Prevention & Tips

A stolen bicycle sucks. Nothing compares to the brutal feeling of having something stolen from you, especially if it is something as beloved and useful as a bicycle. Too often, the Bicycle Coalition hears stories of bicycles being stolen from backyards, garages, and public racks.

Earlier this year our Executive Director’s bicycle got stolen and through the magic of social media, craigslist, and constant communication with the police department, it was found and returned to him in a few weeks! While the recovery rate is traditionally low, there are a few steps you can take to make it easier to get it back into your loving arms.

4e4c27a1ca620.missing bike

Sometimes making a flier is better than therapy.

Register Your Bicycle

  • Registering your bike won’t keep it from being stolen, but it greatly aids in its return to you if it is recovered by the police. The police will not give you back your bike unless they have proof that it belongs to you, so a serial number and photo are essential.
  • The SLOPD just launched an online bicycle registration system for residents, which we encourage you to do here.
  • If you are a Cal Poly student, UPD has an online bicycle registration system for students.
  • If you do not live in San Luis Obispo there are still a few simple steps to take, as illustrated below.

Preventing Theft

  • Lock your bike – it’s the easiest way to deter a thief!
Locking

Basic tips on how to lock your bicycle. Locking the front wheel with the frame to a rack is most essential.

How to Document Your Bicycle

  1. Download & fill-out our “Freezer Form” and keep the information yourself.
  2. Take a photo and type in your serial number and email it to yourself. That way, it’s stored in your email inbox forever.
  3. Use the National Bike Registry for a fee.
  4. Whether you are a renter or homeowner, many insurance plans cover the loss of a bicycle — anywhere in the city. Check in with your Insurance provider to see if your bike is covered.
  5. Follow our 2011 Bike Hack trick to help provide proof that it is your bicycle.

By keeping your serial number and photo handy, you can easily file a police report — or prove the bike is yours if you find it for sale somewhere.

Bike-Photo

Photographing your bicycle doesn’t need to be this serious, but you get the idea.

What to Do if Your Bike Has Been Stolen

  1. Find your serial number and photo of the bike (as mentioned above)
  2. Look to see if there was a camera nearby. If so, contact the building owner to see if they can provide you with footage, to help identify the thief.
  3. File a police report with the local police department.
  4. Post the theft as STOLEN: on craigslist. The craigslist community is amazing, do not underestimate them!
  5. Social media is your friend in this instance, the more you share, the more eyes are on the ground to help recover your beloved bicycle.
  6. Come to our Bike Kitchen and provide a brief description of your bicycle. We do our best to make sure the bikes that come through our doors are not stolen and can notify you if we see them in here.
  7. File a claim with your insurance company, if you are covered. Call your agent to see if you will need a police report and coordinate as appropriate.
  8. Check out the local Flea Markets. Some people have reported finding their bike at various local markets. If you do spot your bike, call the local police immediately and ask them to assist in your recovery. They can find your police report once they begin the investigation. Do not approach or confront the seller for your own safety.

Paso Robles Named Bicycle Friendly Community

Paso_BFCWe’re thrilled to be a part of the process of naming Paso Robles an official Bronze Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists!

With this, the League’s most recent round of designations, there are now 259 BFCs in 47 states across the country. The Bronze Level  award recognizes Paso Robles’s commitment to improving bicycling with investments in the promotion of bicycles, education programs, infrastructure and policies.

This is just one more example of your Bicycle Coalition being hard at work making all of SLO County better for bicycles. Horray for another step forward for a bicycle friendly SLO County!

To help the Bicycle Coalition continue to do amazing things countywide, become a member. The more members we have, the stronger our ability is to advocate and achieve victories like this, we couldn’t do it without you!

You can read more about Paso Roble’s Bronze Level BFC designation in the Paso Robles Daily News here.

Preventing Collisions by Addressing Distracted Driving

With summer fast approaching and more bicycle riders than ever on our roadways, we have been hearing of multiple avoidable collisions between bicycle riders and motorists. In response to a personal experience one of our members wrote an incredible letter to the editor in this week’s Tribune.

We’d like to take this opportunity to thank Lea for letting us publish it here and wish a speedy recovery for anyone who has been in an crash recently. If you or someone you know has been in a crash, the Bicycle Coalition has resources available for you to assist in asserting your rights on a bicycle. Contact us at crash@slobikelane.org.

The following originally appeared in the May 22, 2013 issue of the SLO Tribune.

Plea from an injured cyclist’s wife: Drivers, pay attention
By Lea Brooks

Anxiously waiting outside the emergency room at Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center in San Luis Obispo, I tried not to speculate about my husband’s injuries. All I knew is that he had been hit by a car while bicycling on Highway 1 in Morro Bay and that the trauma team was still evaluating the damage.

California Highway Patrol Officer C.L. Hawkins, who was investigating the crash, emerged from the trauma center’s closed doors carrying a black plastic garbage bag containing the tattered clothes and other belongings of my husband, Myron “Skip” Amerine. She also handed me his cracked, blood-stained helmet.

The driver, she said, was a 23-year-old woman from Cayucos who was running late to her job in Morro Bay. The driver didn’t see Skip until she collided with him from behind at approximately 65 mph. Officer Hawkins said the driver told her she “must not have been paying good enough attention” — a statement included in the official CHP traffic collision report.

The crash occurred on the tricky southbound stretch of Highway 1 between the Highway 41 onramp and Main Street onramp. Bike riders are supposed to follow the dashed white line to the right of the through slow lane and avoid weaving across the on- and off-ramps.

An image captured by Myron ‘Skip’ Amerine’s helmet camera as he was struck by a car.

An image captured by Myron ‘Skip’ Amerine’s helmet camera as he was struck by a car.

A digital video camera image of Skip and his bicycle flying horizontally over the dashed white line where he was supposed to be riding provided solid evidence the driver was at fault. The camera had been mounted on his helmet, but popped off on impact and kept recording until it was turned off by the investigating officers.

The video image is a chilling reminder of the risks people who ride bikes, pedestrians and other motorists face from distracted drivers. An appalling number of drivers are texting, talking on the phone, impaired by alcohol or drugs, or generally not paying attention while behind the wheel of a moving vehicle.

The driver was cited for violation of California Vehicle Code 21658(a), which states a vehicle shall be driven as nearly as practical entirely within a single lane and shall not be moved from the lane until such movement can be made with reasonable safety.

Skip’s injuries included a concussion, compound fracture of a lower vertebra and nasty bruises and abrasions from head to foot. I’m relieved he wasn’t killed or more seriously hurt, but am angry he was the victim of a crash that was 100 percent preventable. Distracted drivers need to realize the consequences of their actions.

In Skip’s situation, he faces weeks of painful healing and reliance on me and others for assistance with daily living. His activities will be hampered by a back brace for two months. Resumption of daily bicycle rides is a distant goal. Our plans for the rest of the year, including a bicycle tour, have been cast aside to focus on Skip’s recovery.

What a paradox that the crash occurred on May 1, the first day of Bike Month. This local and national celebration encourages people to bicycle to work, school, to run errands and for fun and exercise. As bicycle advocates for many years, Skip and I support Bike Month’s role in motivating people to try cycling, and were looking forward to participating in the myriad activities scheduled in San Luis Obispo.

So, how do you encourage people to bicycle when you are the victim of a distracted driver? Many people don’t ride because they are afraid of being hit by a motorist, especially from behind. While statistics show rear-end collisions are not common, they do happen.

My response is that there is risk in almost everything we do, including driving a car. The risk of bicycling is more than offset by its health benefits. Other benefits include reducing greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming, relieving traffic congestion, no gasoline or parking expenses and saving time by combining exercise and transportation. Plus, bicycling is downright fun.

Bike Month provides a platform to remind bike riders about steps they can take to improve their safety, including wearing a helmet and brightly colored clothing, signaling turns and obeying traffic signals and other rules of the road. For more information about bicycle safety and gaining confidence to ride in traffic, enroll in a bicycle education workshop offered by the San Luis Obispo County Bicycle Coalition at slobikeed.org. Joining the Bicycle Coalition by going to slobikelane.org is a constructive way to support efforts to improve the quality of life on the Central Coast through bicycling advocacy, education and inspiration.

Bike Month activities are posted on the San Luis Obispo Council of Governments’ website at rideshare.org/bikemonth2013. It’s not too late to dust off that bike in the garage and participate.

My plea to motorists: Pay attention! Put down that smartphone and other devices, avoid distractions and be alert for people who ride bikes on the road, especially before opening your car door or in blind spots before entering or leaving a lane of traffic. Bicycles are a legitimate form of transportation and cyclists deserve your respect. And remember that distracted driving crashes are preventable.

Lea Brooks is a journalism graduate of Cal Poly. She recently returned to San Luis Obispo after living and working in Northern California for 30 years. She and her husband have been active in bicycle advocacy and advisory groups.

Celebrate Bike Month with $10 Off!

Screen shot 2013-04-24 at 1.32.07 PMWe are halfway through with May’s Bike Month and our Bikes & Beauty Fashion Show is just around the corner!
To celebrate, we are offering $10.00 off memberships until Sunday May 19th at noon by using coupon code BIKEMONTH on the special form below.

2013_BikesAndBeauty

By joining today you will promptly receive your membership packet in the mail – complete with an exclusive invitation to the Bikes & Beauty Fashion Show on June 1st. Have your friends join as well to be a part of the fun at this unique and creative event!

Note: We’re sorry, this coupon code is no longer valid.

The coupon code may have expired, but your Bicycle Coalition is still out there doing goo in our communities everyday! Join online here for your invite to Bikes & Beauty!

Cote de Tolosa IV

It’s that time of year again, time to head out to Tolosa Winery for the 4th annual Cote de Tolosa Velo Challenge. All proceeds from the lunch on the beautiful Tolosa patio go towards the Bicycle Coalition! It’s a great excuse to enjoy a great catered lunch, glass of award-winning Tolosa wine, play some bocce ball, and cheer on the riders as they cross the finish line!

CoteDeTolosa2013

When: May 19, 2013 (ride at 7:00 am, lunch at 11:30 am)
Where: Tolosa Winery, 4910 Edna Road, SLO
How: Register for the ride and buy lunch tickets online here

© 2011 Terrence M. Welliver

© 2011 Terrence M. Welliver

Spring 2013 Spoken Wheel

Hi friends and fellow bicycle lovers! It’s been a while, but we have been busy getting ready for Bike Month and all of the events we have planned throughout San Luis Obispo County in May! We are thrilled to be seeing more and more people on bicycles on the Central Coast and cannot wait for what the future holds for bicycles in our beloved communities.

We just received our latest Spoken Wheel newsletter from the printer and it’s jam packed with some great stuff:

  • Our 2013 Bike Month events
  • Bikes & Beauty party information
  • Bike Lanes 2.0: The Next Generation of Facilities
  • …and more!

SpokenWheel2013

If you are a member, stay tuned for the latest Spoken Wheel newsletter in your mailbox, or if you can’t wait – view it on our website.

Special thanks to Rideshare for putting Bike Month on every May! View all of the events and info about the community bike challenge on their siteScreen shot 2013-04-24 at 1.32.07 PM

Year of the Bicycle Coalition Member

At Bicycle Coalition HQ, we have affectionately dubbed 2012 the Year of the Bicycle Coalition Member. The reasons are endless, but a few things stick out from the rest:

  • We have more members than ever (750+ individuals & 40+ businesses)
  • We hosted our first General Meeting in 2012
  • We hosted the inaugural Members Only Party* in September 2012
  • More and more people are out on bicycles every day in SLO County!

Join03

In reflecting on 2012 one thing remains clear; the Bicycle Coalition family is growing and everyone is feeling it! Everything we do is for our members. We loved getting everyone together through our new events, to share our vision for the organization and celebrate our collective love for bicycles and the quality of life in SLO County that we cherish dearly.

Yet the Year of the Bicycle Coalition Member goes well beyond our events. Everywhere we went, we met people who just became members, all were energized and proud to be a part of our rapidly growing organization. We welcome these newcomers to the Bicycle Coalition family and can’t wait to see them at upcoming events, out on their bicycles, and sharing the community-minded vision of the Bicycle Coalition for years to come.

If you haven’t joined yet, now is the time!

We are THE voice for bicycles in SLO County, our numbers our growing, and we’d love to have you become a part of our vision for a more bicycle friendly community.

*Our next Members Only Party is set for June 1, 2013 – and it’s a bicycle fashion show!