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Lodi hosts first Bike to Work Week

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Posted: Tuesday, May 17, 2011 12:00 am | Updated: 4:25 pm, Tue May 17, 2011.

Lodi resident John Nunes regularly rides his black Nirve bike — with an orange horn that has the cartoon character Goofy on it — to do errands around town.

“When the basket is full, it’s time to go home,” he said.

He attended Lodi’s first event celebrating Bike to Work Week on Monday. The nationwide week promotes bicycling to reduce pollution.

The event at Lodi’s Post Office Plaza included a free maintenance clinic from REI, a refuel station, a safety discussion by Lodi police and free T-shirts and promotional items for bicyclists and anyone else who stopped at the booths.

Commute Connection, a regional rideshare program, sponsored the event.

The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District discussed how bike riding helps the environment. About 80 percent of air pollution in the Central Valley is from vehicle emissions, said Anthony Presto, a outreach and communications representative.

Every time gas goes up, people start grabbing their bikes, so Presto said the goal is to get them to make a permanent lifestyle change.

“With the price of gas, it’s a great incentive. You get exercise, enjoy the scenery and, depending on the distance, it can be very practical,” Presto said.

People can learn more about ways to reduce air emissions and sign a Healthy Air Living Personal Pledge.

The Lodi Police Department was also at the event promoting the use of helmets and bike safety.

Officer Chris Kaufman said Lodi ranked third out of 104 California cities with populations between 50,000 and 100,000 in 2009 for the highest rate of bicycle versus vehicle injury accidents.

During one day at Millswood Middle School, Kaufman wrote 14 tickets to kids who did not have helmets when riding their bikes.

He said adults in the community need to set the example by wearing helmets every time they ride, and always ride the same direction as traffic.

REI also offered a safety inspection of bicycles and promoted their free bicycle maintenance courses. While 2-year-old Jack Haynes reached for the pedal, Cassidy Thomas tested the handlebars to make sure they could handle a crash. He also recommended people prop up their bike and push the pedal to make sure it is hitting all the correct gears.

He said people should also regularly test their brakes and tire inflation.

Nunes said it is ridiculous to get in a car, when bike riders can get from one side of town to another in 15 minutes.

“It’s cost efficient and healthy. You see a lot more on a bicycle than a car and everyone wants to talk to you,” Nunes said.

Contact reporter Maggie Creamer at maggiec@lodinews.com or read her blog at www.lodinews.com/blogs/city_buzz.

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4 comments:

  • posted at 2:28 pm on Tue, May 17, 2011.

    Posts:

    I make it a point to ride to work as often as possible. Only poor weather generally keeps me from using the bicycle as my mode of transportation. Because of riding my bike, I didn't have to fill my car's tank for well over a month.

     
  • Kevin Paglia posted at 1:34 pm on Tue, May 17, 2011.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 1880

    Doug, love HOC, but since I always got the Green tea smoothie (don't drink coffee) I needed to cut them out because of the HUGE calorie count in the smoothies. Not just there, I had to cut 90% of the green tea smoothies. For what ever reason it seems the GTS have a higher calorie count than other ones.

    Now i just brew my own tea and enjoy it that way. We were at HOC today (via car) for my wife.

     
  • Doug Chaney posted at 11:59 am on Tue, May 17, 2011.

    Doug Chaney Posts: 1232

    Kevin, I haven't seen you at the House of Coffees lately and hope the soon to come (?) summer weather will bring you there more often. I know you're very passionate in your endeavors in life, especially the bicycle issue. I, too, ride my bike wherever I can and just love everything about the bike lanes and the short distances the city of Lodi has to offer and the compact size of Lodi itself. I see many young people riding down my street going to work early each morning, rain or shine, and all comments point to the tremendous savings on not having to pay for fuel and doing their part to contribute to help keep our environment as clean as possible.

     
  • Kevin Paglia posted at 8:46 am on Tue, May 17, 2011.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 1880

    Anyone who's been around here for a while know where i fall on this issue. I got my four wheel bike out and enjoying running errands on it. Have fun talking with people in parking lots about it. Most common question, "did you make it?" answer, "no, I'm not that talented." Most common ice breaker used when I see people looking at it when i am approaching after shopping, "you should see me on the freeways." (for you too literal people, no I don't actually take it on the freeways.) I'm pushing 1500 miles on it, surgery and weather has really slowed me down on it, but getting back into the swing. Planning my route to get to Costco to shop there when needed. Plus I lost 20lbs since I got it.

    Also have my standard bike for doing the quick paperwork errands and for going faster. If you think about it, Lodi really is small enough where you can cycle to most of your errands if space allows.

    Advice I give people who ask, cheap way to reduce gas AND still run shopping on your bike, buy one of the toddler tow-behinds and use that as your trunk. At about a hundred dollars it could pay for itself in the first summer. Still like to see more stores with bike stations at them.

     

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