Speak up for better places to bike in DC

How are you helping make DC a better place to bike this month?

We hope you’re out riding your bike, of course! But you can go a step further by attending an upcoming public meeting to support building new protected bike lanes across the city.

C St. NE Rehabilitation

Thursday, April 26 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Rosedale Recreation Center
1701 Gales St. NE

DDOT is nearing final design on a rebuild of C St. NE from 14th St. to 21st St. NE and parts of North Carolina Ave. The new design would drastically reduce speeding and includes protected bike lanes, shorter road crossings, and more green space. More info at the project page.

Connecticut Ave Streetscape in Dupont

Thursday, April 26 6:00 pm
Wework Dupont
1875 Connecticut Ave NW, 3rd Floor

Discuss ideas for a new bike and pedestrian friendly Connecticut Avenue streetscape between Dupont Circle and California St NW! This project includes a deck-over plaza from the Dupont Circle to Q St. Show up to make the case for protected bike lanes! Find more information at the project page.

21st & 22nd St. NW

Wednesday, May 23 6:00 pm
West End Library
2301 L St NW

This is the first public meeting for the 21st/22nd Street NW protected bike lane project. DDOT staff will share existing conditions findings and draft selection of three alignments to advance to 10% design. More information can be found here.

Here’s a DDOT flyer with more details

Biking & Walking in Regional Planning

Planning for easier walking and biking usually happens at the local level, but major decisions, affecting billions of dollars in transportation funds, happen at the region’s Transportation Planning Board. The TPB is updating its long range transportation plan, called Visualize 2045. For the first time, biking and walking connections to transit and trails could have a special focus in this plan! Attend a meeting to make sure biking and walking projects get the funding they need.

Rockville: April 26, 7pm
Executive Office Building
101 Monroe Street
Rockville, MD 20850

District of Columbia: May 1, 7pm
Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments
777 North Capitol Street NE
Washington, DC 20002

Arlington: May 2, 6:30pm
Arlington County Public Library
Central Library Auditorium
1015 North Quincy Street
Arlington, VA 22201

Fairfax: May 8, 7pm
Providence Community Center
3001 Vaden Drive
Fairfax, VA 22031

Learn more at https://www.mwcog.org/visualize2045/participate/

Put the Pedal to the Podcast

These days, podcasts are sort of a big deal. Especially since the breakout success of “Serial”—the 2014 true crime podcast from This American Life that explored a murder case in Baltimore in the Winter of 1999. Just four years later, podcasts are everywhere you look—oops, we mean listen!

Podcasts have become a way to consume news, learn new skills, connect with pop culture, and discover stories we might never have heard otherwise. If you aren’t familiar with podcasts, they are sort of like on-demand radio. Podcast topics can range from parenting to politics and everything in between.

There are even quite a few podcasts on bicycling! And here at WABA, we thought it was about time to explore some of the options.

Here are our favorites:

  • Shift Up Bike Podcast – This podcast is a new bike-industry focused weekly podcast where host Arliegh moderates healthy conversations to build a better bike industry!
  • The Bike Nerds Podcast – The Bike Nerds Podcast hosted on the OAM Network. The Bike Nerds is hosted by Kyle Wagenschutz and Sarah Studdard. Their podcast features community leaders, neighborhood advocates and urban thinkers on how bicycling makes cities better. They also nerd out on the aspects of their lives that influences their life on two wheels.
  • We Got to Hang Out – This podcast is hosted by four friends living in the Portland who have been biking or working in the biking industry for nearly a decade. They gather to tell authentic stories of biking in a casual storytelling style.  
  • Breaking Bike – This new podcast by Lanespotter is all about urban biking. It’s about bike lanes, bike tech, and people who bike telling bike stories.
  • The Slow Ride Podcast – three former bicycle messengers from Minneapolis, MN gather for an unscripted conversation about the bike racing and culture.

Download ‘em and take a listen, and if there’s a bike-related podcast you love, let us know on Twitter (@WABADC) or Facebook.

Ride into spring with Silver Spring Social Rides

After a chilly winter, trees are getting greener and the air sweeter, meaning spring is finally here! And now that it is fun to be outside again, it’s time to go for a bike ride! Join WABA and the Bike Silver Spring community for a series of social rides to get back in the saddle, meet new friends, and get to know Silver Spring by bike. Rides are fun, free, and most are family friendly.

Earth Day Ride – Sunday, April 22

Celebrate our planet with a family friendly ride We will meet at Veterans Plaza at 10:00am in downtown Silver Spring, and ride up the Sligo Creek Trail to Wheaton Park. On the way back, riders will have the option to help “clean the creek” with Friends of Sligo Creek. The route is 14 miles round trip, mostly on trails and quiet streets. Register here.

City Cycling Class – Saturday. May 5

In a WABA City Cycling class you’ll learn bike handling tips and tricks that leave you feeling more confident, competent and comfortable, whether you’re riding on the brand new Spring St. protected bike lanes or on a hectic and busy street like Wayne Ave. Learn more and register here.

Silver Spring Art Ride – Saturday, May 12

Join us for Bike Silver Spring’s second Art Ride on Sunday, May 12. We will meet at 10:00am at Veterans Plaza and bike around Silver Spring at a gentle pace while learning about some of the public art you see everyday (and maybe a few you hadn’t noticed). We welcome bikers of all ages and skill levels to enjoy this guided tour of Silver Spring public art! The ride will be around 5 miles with many stops. Register here.

Bike to Work Day – Friday, May 18

Join the growing number of bike commuters on Bike to Work Day 2018. Stop by one of the 100+ pit stops in the region for food, prizes and the encouragement you need to get to work by bike.

Nearby pit stops include Silver Spring – Discovery Place, Takoma Park Downtown – Old Takoma, Takoma Park – Sligo Creek Trail and FDA White Oak. If you work in downtown DC, join a 7:00 am convoy from the Silver Spring or Takoma Park Pit Stops. Register for your free t-shirt and learn more at www.biketoworkmetrodc.org.

Memorial Day – Monday, May 28

Monday, May 28 is Memorial Day and streets near the Mall will be closed to auto traffic. Come ride from Veterans Plaza in downtown Silver Spring at 10:00 a.m. We will ride to Beach Drive in Rock Creek Park, and head south toward DC and the Mall (about 12 miles one way). After cruising the car-free streets in downtown DC, riders will then have the option to ride back the way we came, take the metro back home, or stay in DC for the Memorial Day festivities. Register here.

A Sweet Ride – Sunday, June 9

We know you love biking, but why not sweeten the deal a bit further? Join Bike Silver Spring on Sunday, June 9 at 10:00 am for a casual ride through downtown Silver Spring and Takoma Park with stops at several local shops for some delicious sweet treats. Register here.

Bike Safari (Zoo Ride) – Saturday, June 23

Let’s go bikin’ now (everybody’s learnin’ how). Come on a safari with me! Join our pack when Bike Silver Spring rides to the National Zoo on Saturday, June 23! We will meet at Veterans Plaza at 10:00am, ride about 7.5 miles thru Rock Creek Park, and then enjoy a couple hours at the zoo. You’ll have the option to bike back, take the metro, or continue your own adventure from the zoo! Register here.

Rides are made possible thanks to support form the Montgomery County Planning Department’s Silver Spring Placemaking Initiative.

Bike Camp is back!

Bike Camp! is back and bigger than ever!

We are excited to offer four sessions this year:

City Explorer’s Camp Sessions:

  • 8-11 year olds | June 18-22
  • 12-14 year olds | July 2-6 *No camp July 4

City Explorers Camp will focus on building bike comfort and skills, route creation, group riding, and longer rides.

Campers will ride every day (weather dependent), and as much as 20 miles per day!

Campers will bike to different field trips and volunteer opportunities across the city.

This camp will include basic bike maintenance, such as how to fix a flat tire.

This is a great camp for campers who want to see the city, visit new places, and build community.

While campers outside of the age ranges will not be turned away, the activities at each session will be geared to those ages.

Bike Build Camp Sessions:

  • 8-11 year olds | June 25-29
  • 12-14 year olds | July 9-13

Bike Build Camp will focus on mechanics training and mastery of bike parts.

Campers will build a bike from the frame up under the guidance of Gearin’ Up Bicycles.

Campers will have the opportunity to go on multiple shorter rides during the session.

This camp will include at least one hands-on visit to a local bike shop maintenance department.

This is a great camp for campers who want to work with their hands, make a bike that they can keep, and explore a little too.

Hours: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday – Friday

Location: KIPP DC Shaw Campus, 421 P St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001

Click here for all the details on Bike Camp!, including how to register.

If you have any questions, please email bikecamp@waba.org or call 202-518-0524 x222

Come to the River: Anacostia River Festival!

The cherry blossoms are in peak bloom which means the Anacostia River Festival, one of the District’s biggest annual festivals, is right around the corner! Rivers, trails, bike rides – all the elements for a great weekend. We have a number of ways you can join us for the fun – at one event, or all of them!

Monday, April 9th

Crafting for Anacostia River Festival Bike Parade
5:30 pm – 7:30 pm

We’re teaming up with Project Create DC to host a bike craft night for the annual bike parade. We’ll be making river-themed versions of the DC flag so come with your best ideas for local river wildlife flags! Felt and materials provided.

More details and let us know you’re coming

Saturday, April 14th

Anacostia River Festival Cleanup
9:00 am – 12:00 pm

Help make the big day a success by joining us the day before the Festival for a massive trash removal effort and park cleanup! We’re joining Anacostia Riverkeeper so we should have a decent crowd of folks. We’d all prefer that our watershed not have trash in the first place, but second best is a fun morning with great folks making a tangible impact to prettify our public space.

More details and let us know you’re coming

Sunday, April 15th

Ride Along The River with WABA
12:00 pm – 1:30 pm

The flowers are blooming, the birds are singing, and the Anacostia River is gorgeous. Join us for a ride that celebrates spring! Come explore the beautiful Anacostia River Trail with us, enjoy a great ride, and we’ll end up at the Anacostia River Festival as a group.

More details and let us know you’re coming

Anacostia River Festival
1:00 pm – 5:00 pm

The big day! 10,000 people, boat tours, crafts, hammocks, and free bike valet. It’s a great afternoon in the park at the Anacostia River Festival. Bring your family and friends and spend the day with us!

More details

Volunteer at the Festival with WABA
12:30 pm – 5:30 pm

The Anacostia River Fest is a huge outreach day for WABA and our booth is busy all day. To pull off all the fabulous programming and get more people biking on the Anacostia River Trail and beyond, we’re going to need some help!

Volunteers will be supported by WABA staff, including the Trail Ranger team. The main role for volunteers will be cheerfully greeting Festival-goers, promoting WABA and biking, and answering questions.

More details and let us know you’re coming

What’s a Roll Model?

Women & Bicycles Roll Models are peer-to-peer mentors who know bicycling, and want to share their knowledge and excitement with new and less confident riders. They are experts of their own experience, and want to help other women become comfortable on two wheels.

At a Roll Model meet-up, new women riders (called protégés) learn the basics of riding in a fun, welcoming environment. The Roll Model leading the meet-up will review the parts of a bike, different types of bikes, what to wear to stay comfortable, tips for riding in traffic, and selecting the best route. Many protégés and Roll Models have gone on to take City Cycling classes together, along with WABA Signature rides and Women & Bicycles events.

Last year, Roll Models helped protégés:

  • Learn the best routes to ride to commute to work in DC;
  • Figure out new bicycles, and how to put them on a car-mounted rack;
  • Decide how to set up their bikes to carry spare clothes;
  • Go on their first big ride! Protégés and their Roll Models attended the Strong Women Ride, the Seagull Century, the 50 States Ride, the Cider ride, several City Cycling classes, the Lighting the Way Community Ride, and more!

How do I sign up?

Ashley Blue, one of W&B’s original Roll Models, on the National Mall with her bike.

Join Ashley Blue, one of our original Roll Models, for the first 2018 Roll Models meet-up on April 7. Ashley’s goal is to help other women feel confident as they achieve their goals and learn new skills on bikes. One of the biggest questions she faces how to use her bike in everyday life for errands, so to help other women find the answer, she’ll show how to set up a bike for getting groceries.

We invite women who want to be protégés to sign up here.

Do you want to be a Roll Model yourself? The next training will be in April – join the Doodle poll to choose a date.

Ready to learn a new trick?

You’ve read the headlines—more people than ever are bicycling in the Washington, DC region. If you’re already one of them, great!

But if you’re not riding yet, WABA is here to help. The Everyday Bicycling Team at WABA offers a variety of classes designed to get you out on the bicycle for the first time or for the millionth time.

In a WABA City Cycling class you’ll learn bike handling tips and tricks that leave you feeling more confident, competent and comfortable, whether you’re riding on the beautiful recently extended Anacostia River Trail or on a hectic and busy downtown street like Florida Ave.

City Cycling classes are 3 hours long and tons of fun. In the beginning you meet all of the participants and share why you’re at the class and what you want to get out of it. Then, you get to choose between the “fundamentals” group or the “confidence” group. Both groups learn a lot and get the chance to practice new skills before going out on a ride. No matter which group you choose, you’ll leave more confident and capable on your bike.

On a Community Ride you will take a leisurely spin with others to explore new parts of the region. This spring we are preparing to take in tulips, baked goods, urban farms and more. Community rides are short and slow on purpose. We stop a few times along the way to talk about different road designs or infrastructure challenges and sometimes also to eat tacos.

If you don’t know how to ride a bike yet; or know someone that wants to learn, then WABA’s Learn to Ride class is the place to go. Our Learn to Ride class is 3 hours long and uses a tried and true method to help adults learn to ride a bicycle. Last year we taught more than 450 adults to ride. This year classes are being offered throughout the region.

Every class is taught by  League of American Bicyclist certified League Cycling Instructors. .

All of our classes are supported and funded by local government agencies: Montgomery County Department of Transportation, DC Department of Transportation, Arlington County, Alexandria County and the city of Falls Church, VA.

Please bring a friend and join WABA this spring to pick up a trick or two on your bicycle and be one of the new bicyclists we see on the streets or trails enjoying your ride!