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?

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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!

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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.

Tammy Duckworth: Rockstar

Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth (IL), shares her story & belief in bicycles with us at the Women’s Bicycling Forum.

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As an Iraq War veteran, Duckworth lost both of her legs while piloting a helicopter, she truly is an inspiration to us all. On what bicycles have offered for our veterans:

“Bicycling has represented an idea of never giving up, and given us the motivation to keep going.”

“For our wounded warriors the hardest part is not being able to use your body anymore.”

Needless to say, she is a rockstar!

National Women’s Bicycling Forum!

Women Bike, the new League of American Bicyclists program, is hosting the Women’s Bicycling Forum! We’re here all day and are so excited to see a packed house and fantastic styling – looking good League!

We’ll be providing updates throughout the week, including from our day on Capitol Hill meeting with congressional leaders.

Go bicycles!

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The Capitol Building

Look closely, those are two people riding some Capital Bikeshare bikes here on the Hill.

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We were finally able to get outside for the first time today and see the cherry blossoms in full bloom, making for a beautiful day in DC. We can’t wait to get out to the national mall and see more of them from the Bikeshare bikes ourselves!

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More From Capitol Hill

We just wrapped up our day on Capitol Hill, and were able to meet with staffers from both Rep Capps’ and Rep McCarthy’s office, our elected officials from SLO County!

In Lois Capps office with our neighbors from Santa Barbara County

In Kevin McCarthy's office with his transportation staffer, Rob McCarthy

All of the California delegation almost all posing for a photo! We’ve got people from all across the state, and sat together to make sure we could meet with every representative in the California legislature.

For now, we’re off for a much needed bite to eat, it’s been a long day of meetings all over the hill, and a slice of pizza is in order. We’ll provide a more detailed update of our day on the hill tomorrow.

From Capitol Hill

Today is off to a great start! With meetings scheduled with Sen Boxer & Rep Capps’ offices, we’re excited to share the benefits that biking & walking will provide for our future!

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In between these meetings we’ve been dropping in to chat with other elected officials, on behalf of those who couldn’t make it out to DC to join us. Our message is concise and extremely relevant, as the federal transportation bill is on the top of everyone’s mind.

House leadership proposed a 3 month extension this morning and it has been the buzz on Capitol Hill in the hallways. This timing allows the conversation to run parallel to what’s being discussed in the House of Representatives today.

Have we mentioned how much everyone loves the bike pins we’re all wearing?!

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Here we are before our meeting with Capps’ office with our fellow advocates and neighbors from Santa Barbara:

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Stay tuned for some better photos later today when we have time to upload them from a computer!

Importance of Safe Routes to School

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The founder and champion of Safe Routes to School, Deb Hubsmith, shares some astounding statistics about kids biking & walking to school.

In 2005, the medical costs of treatment for kid’s biking & walking injuries, including fatalities, totalled $839 MILLION – 4.5 times what we annually spend on Safe Routes to School

10-14% of ALL road traffic is made of kids being driven to school

Only 13% of kids ages 5 to 14 walk or bike to school. In 1960 this number was over 50%

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One of the BIG reasons we’re in Washington DC is to fight to SAVE Safe Routes to School funding. We KNOW it’s important for our children to safely get to/from school for years to come!

Notes from Day Two

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This morning we heard from Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood about the future of bicycling in America. It was early morning east coast time, even earlier if you take ito account the time change, yet LaHood was able to offer some inspiring words before we take to Capitol Hill tomorrow and meet with our elected officials.

A good transportation bill, is a good jobs bill.

Our goal here in DC is to ask for continued, dedicated funding for biking & walking, LaHood is right there with us:

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Read more about his words this morning on his own site here.

We’ll have more updates from the rest of the day soon enough! Twitter has been the place where a lot of acivity is happening here at the Bike Summit, follow us on there to see updates we’re sharing from other groups too.

National Women Cycling Forum

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Currently at the National Women Cycling Forum, with an inspiring panel of women, all hoping to increase the number of women on bicycles in our country.

Veronica Davis: Co-founder of Black Women Bike
Andrea Garland: Planner at Alta Planning+Design
Nelle Pierson: Events Coordinator for the Washington Area Bicyclist Association
Marla Streb: Former professional cyclist of 16 years, works with all-female Team LUNA Chix
Elysa Walk: General Manager of Giant Bicycle

Did you know that 55% of daily bicycle riders in the Netherlands is female?! That’s our hope for the future of biking in our country…

Everyone’s got great ideas about how we can accomplish such a seemingly simple goal:

-Inspire someone: Find a female you know, ask her why she doesn’t ride a bike, and try to address her concerns directly. Take her on a ride around the block, show her a bike she loves, each person counts!
-Become a mentor to a younger female: Leading by example is a powerful tool.
-Continue the conversation: What do you think would help get more women on bikes? Let us know, we want to help you make it happen!
-Speak up: For products that represent you… With the ideas you have to increase the number of women on bikes… For the future female bikers of America
-Get involved: Become a member, volunteer at your local organization so they can better represent women.

There are so many great things happening for women and bicycles right now, stay tuned for more as we have time to share it with you from Washington DC!

We’re Going to Washington DC!

Next week, the Coalition Staff will is braving the cold and heading to Washington DC for the 2012 National Bike Summit, a gathering of bicycle organizations from all over the country. We will be advocating for biking and walking, and sharing your voice with our elected officials in DC.

Our message is clear: preserve dedicated funding for biking and walking. As more people choose these active modes to move around, it’s important we provide safe facilities for everyone.

You can follow our progress here on the blog to stay up to date with what we’re up to all the way across the country. We’re out there making sure your voice is heard!

If you want to add you voice to hundreds of others as we head to DC, become a member! We are proud to be YOUR voice representing bicycles in DC, and couldn’t do it without you.