BACooN Ride Rolls On June 28 and Waukee Brings the Fun! Waukee’s Centennial Park is your home base for the 2014 BACooN RIDE with camping, entertainment, and parking available to registered riders. Bacon lovers will have plenty of fun activities and bacon to make them feel right at home.
was used as the main campground on RAGBRAI in 2006, the city of Waukee is ready to fulfill the needs of riders and campers, including those with tents, buses or RVs. Camping will be free to Camping will be available to registered participants, but all registered riders in there will be no electric Centennial Park on Friday, hook-ups for buses or RVs. June 27 and Saturday, June 28. Because Centennial Park Starting Friday night, riders
Kathy Ridnour Retires at Iowa DOT
After a lengthy career at the Iowa DOT, Kathy Ridnour, Safe Routes to School coordinator is retiring. Kathy previously served at the Iowa Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator overseeing projects such as the state bike map, smart wheeler education program, and sponsorship of bike to work week.
Kathy was an integral part of starting the Iowa Bicycle Coaltion. She served on the initial board of directors, convinced the Iowa DOT to become a founding member of the organization, and suggested the Coalition take on the Iowa Bicycle Summit. In more recent years, Kathy has coordinated the Safe Routes to School Program that has impacted tens of thousands of Iowa school-aged children. The purpose
and community members will be able to quench their thirst at a beverage garden in Centennial Park from 5:00-11:00 p.m. The band “Swing Crew” will keep the fun alive from 7:00-11:00 p.m. On Saturday morning, the Waukee Fire Department and the Iowa Egg Council will
provide riders with an extra boost of protein with a bacon and egg breakfast taco in Centennial Park from 6:00-10:00 a.m. After the BACooN RIDE is over, the fun will continue at Mickey’s Irish Pub in Waukee, where the band LESSON 7 will entertain and beverages will be plentiful.
Iowa Drops to #25 Bike Friendly State. Iowa Bicycle Coalition reacts. At one point, Iowa was the 6th most Bicycle Friendly State in the US. The annual ranking from the League of American Bicyclists has been steadily declining since 2009. Iowa has occupied spots at 9th, 16th, 21st, and now 25th position. Iowans who like to ride bicycles in Iowa should be disappointed and concerned.
the next evaluation. At the same time, other states are improving conditions for cyclists. If Iowa doesn't decide to tackle some big issues soon, we will fail to improve our ranking or we may fall even farther behind the other states.
This just doesn't seem right. Iowa hosts the largest, longest, and oldest statewide Bicycle Friendly does not bicycle touring event. RAGBevaluate how much Iowans RAI makes Iowa known enjoy bicycles, how friendly around the world as a great of a wave they give as they place to ride a bicycle. The pass bikes on the road, or HyVee Triathlon is one of the how many crashes occur greatest multisport events in over the course of a year. the country and it is hosted The evaluation considers right here in Iowa. We refer to policies and practices in Iowa's trail system as the engineering, education, world capital of trails. encouragement, enforcement, and evaluation against The truth is, Iowans are the other 50 states. Those reluctant on making things five words that start with E better for bicycling. In 1988, are known as the 5 E's and 49 states adopted laws that are the national strategy for gave bicyclists the same improving conditions for rights and duties as the people riding bicycles. drivers of vehicles. Iowa was the last state to adopt such Iowa is tackling some things legislation. that will result in points during
BIKE FRIENDLY STATE
RIDNOUR of the Safe Routes to School Program is to encourage more walking and bicycling to school. The Iowa DOT made that possible by approving hundreds of walking and bicycling facilities in and around school zones. The investments made it easier for more kids to walk and bicycle to school. Kathy also prioritized the involvement of the Iowa Bicycle Coalition into her Safe Routes to School Program. Through multiple grants, the Iowa Bicycle Coalition created a Safe Routes to School Partnership by holding organizing workshops in two-thirds of Iowa counties. The program has succesfully launched multiple walking school buses, bike safety days, and hundreds of classrooms implementing walking and bicycling safety into the schoolday. Kathy has worked with partners across Iowa to navigate Federal transporta-
I could give you a couple of health statistics or environmental impacts to support the reason to invest in bicycling. However, the more powerful reason is economic. People are dropping a lot of money in association with bicycling. It is the "staycation" strategy on steroids. An innkeeper in Northeast Iowa told me bicycling is driving his business.
ing in their rural trails with funding from a conservation bond. Waterloo passed a complete streets policy honored as one of the top policies in the US. What does the State of Iowa need to do to return to the top 10 Bicycle Friendly States? 1. Infrastructure Investment. We need to stop siphoning money normally dedicated for trails into highway and bridge projects. We need to fund bike projects from the Traffic Safety Improvement Program, Air Quality, and other eligible programs. We need to expand the use of the trails funds for other bicycle facilities and maintenance.
Workforce development is the other powerful reason. Recent headlines spoke about young workers who will relocate to areas with more transportation choices. Young professionals are relying upon transit and bicycling more and more. If Iowa doesn't adapt, our talent pool of young workers will shrink. Investing in bicycling is one 2. Pass some common solution to the brain drain. sense bike safety laws. If a bicyclist is turning right, There are some great they should be able to things going on in across point right with their right the state. Mason City is arm and signal a turn, poised to invest $1.8 right? A person riding a million of local money in bicycle should be able to their bicycling network. move to the center of the Johnson County is invest- lane if there is a pothole, or
Dubuque Gran Fondo, August 16 On Saturday, August 16th, the Dubuque Gran Fondo will depart from the National Mississippi River Museum, climb its way through the city of Dubuque, and bounce over the gravel roads of Dubuque County before returning to the River Museum for the post-race expo and party.
and enjoy a great day in the Dubuque countryside. Please visit www.dubuqueGF.com to register and to be kept up to date on all the latest information.
Participants can choose to race or ride the Dubuque Gran Fondo—sections of the course will be timed—and rider times over these sections will determine the winners of the Gran Fondo. Or riders can opt to simply ride the Gran Fondo
For a limited time, Iowa Bicycle Coalition Members get a $10 discount on entry by using the code “IBC” when registering—but hurry, this offer expires on July 1, 2014.
IOWA BICYCLIST | PAGE 2
The overall men's and women's race registered winners will receive a Van Dessel Hellafaster bike.
a right turn-only lane, correct? Should a motorist be allowed to open a car door before it is safe from being struck by other vehicles? Can we allow speed limits in certain areas to be below 20 mph? Not right now in Iowa. 3. Adopt A New Bike Plan and Complete Streets Policy. This project is underway at the Iowa DOT. I am certain the plan will be well written and impactful. Implementation will be the key to benefiting Iowans. Formal adoption of the plan by the Iowa DOT Commission will be the first sign of implementation. 4. Increase the amount of people riding bicycles. We need to raise the bike commuter percentage to 1%, almost double from where we are. Modest efforts in Iowa communities could yield big impacts to that number. We move the needle over 1% when bicycling becomes an easy and convenient choice. I attended two Blue Zone kickoffs and another Blue Zone progress update last week. One of the top recommendations was to buy a bike or dust one off and use it. The Blue Zone Project knows bicycle facilities are impactful on the health and economics of our communities. We need the State of Iowa to embrace bicycling as an opportunity. Invest in bike infrastructure, pass better laws, adopt an effective bike plan, and put more Iowans on bicycles and we will be racing towards the top 10 Bicycle Friendly States again.
Top Tips to Carry Stuff on Your Bicycle While bicycling may be heavily used for recreation in Iowa, there is a growing number of people using bicycles for transportation. It is become typical to see bicycles at the grocery store, post office, or workplace. Any bicyclist who has used a bike for transportation knows they need to carry items safely. Members of the Iowa Bicycle Coalition gave us top tips on how to carry stuff on your bike. #1 Carry items on your bike instead of on you. There are a couple of options when you have items to carry. You could strap them to a rider using a backpack or you could strap them to your bicycle. Some people have trailers that attach to the bike that make transporting items easy. A few people said they have Xtracycles or cargobikes that can carry a lot of items. But, a large majority of Iowa bicyclists agree that is is easier to carry items on your bicycle than it is to strap them to the rider.
IBC Sponsored Events: June 7 Tour De Cure [Clive] June 21 Biking Bondu [Bondurant] June 28 Bacoon Ride [Waukee]
bicyclists to remember the front of the bike for storage. Handlebar bags, frame bags, and baskets can be effective in transporting your belongings. This is especially true if you have small items for short distances. It is easy to reach into the front basket to place or remove the items.
advice recorded in an Iowa Bicycle Coalition members survey was to ensure the loads are balanced on each side of your bicycle, and items are secure to your bicycle so they aren’t caught in the moving parts. Putting grocery bags on the handlebars always seems to lead to disaster.
#3 If you don’t have bike bags, use a backpack. Backpacks seem to be the top choice for transporting items strapped to the rider. Fanny packs, messenger bags, or drawstring bags are #2 Most people use the other good choices. Even rear of the bike, but don’t camelback hydration forget the front. systems have compartA supermajority of people ments to carry your stuff if said they put items in needed. panniers over the rear wheel of the bicycle. Many others #4 It does not slow you use a trunk bag and a rear down. rack. Panniers, trunk bags, Carrying items seems like and rear racks are easy to an additional burden, but buy at bicycle retailers. One experienced bicyclists agree of the benefits of a pannier that it doesn’t drag down the system, is the bags can be speed or effort of the ride. It removed from the bike. seems like it might be more Once you reach your desti- psychological with one nation, unfasten the bags bicyclist even suggesting to and take them into your never weigh your loaded destination. bicycle.”
One bicyclist added sage advice, “There's no right or wrong way to carry things on your bike. Just do what makes sense to you. The best advice given to me about carrying things is from meeting and talking to others (in person) who carry things by bike. Online forums, blogs, and websites can help, but actual conversation and seeing setups in person have been my best source of information.”
But people also reminded
Some of the final bits of
Carrying items on your bike is easy if you remember four important tips. Carry items on your bike instead of on you. Most people use the rear of the bike, but don’t forget the front. If you don’t have bike bags, use a backpack. Most of all, it really does not slow you down.
June 28 Tour De Cure [Coralville] July 19 Visit our booth at the RAGBRAI Expo [Rock Valley] August 31 Gran Gable Fondo [Iowa City/Coralville] January 23, 2015 Iowa Bicycle Summit [Des Moines] January 24, 2015 Iowa Bike Expo [Des Moines] January 24, 2015 RAGBRAI Route Announcement Party [Des Moines] February 7, 2015 BRR [Perry] April 7, 2015 Legislative Bike Ride [Des Moines]
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Iowa Bicycle Coalition Staff Reports Safe Routes to School Alana Croco
Executive Director Mark Wyatt We are moving offices for the second time this year. The city of Coralville has been generous in their support of our organization and loaned us unused space in the Iowa River Landing District. Our current office is unused commercial space that has been finally rented to a new tenant. Coralville has come through again and will be helping us into a unused transit center space. This is also temporary because the Iowa Bicycle Coalition will find a permanent home in the Coralville Intermodal Facility which will be built in the next year. The Intermodal Facility will allow for bike lockers, limited bike maintenance, and a connection to transit services. Most of all, we will advise multimodal commuters on better choices for getting around by bike. This will be a great move for the Coalition and provide some permanent space for bicyclists to call home.
National Biking Month has been such a busy month for the Iowa Safe Routes to School Program! We wrapped up the 2014 Spring Punch Card Contest. Nine schools participated with over 350 students. Twenty students were named winners, receiving a FitBit or GeoPalz Pedometers. On May 7th we celebrated Bike to school with over 30 schools participating. We've traveled all over the state of Iowa to better educate your children about bicycle safety. Not only have we helped with a ton of great rodeos across the state, but we've had many opportunities to teach children about the importance of bicycle safety within the classroom. Don't hesitate to contact our program director, Alana for more information on rodeos, classroom education, assistance in building walking school bus programs, and workshops for communities.
Membership Ali Winn This month, we will be rolling out our new/renewing member welcome packets and adding business and bike club memberships to the mix. Any individual or household who has joined/renewed since April 2014 will begin receiving their one of a kind Iowa Bicycle Coalition Welcome Packet this month. Those who joined/renewed prior to April, will receive theirs when they renew in 2015. We also officially raised our membership prices, however, current members can renew from April 2014 to March 2015 at the rate they joined/renewed for in 2013. We are excited about the membership changes happening within our organization and hope these changes allow us to reach our goal of doubling our membership by this time next year.
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