Bike Friendly Portage!
Springtime is here, which means another safe and fun season on the more than 55 miles of the Portage Bikeway! Riders are encouraged to brush up on the basics of bicycle safety: wear a helmet; check your bike for proper fit; make sure the brakes are in proper working order; that the tires are properly inflated and review the rules of the road.
Legislation passed in the City of Portage requires motorists to provide at least five feet of distance between themselves and bicyclists when passing. The City of Kalamazoo also has a similar law. Visit the League of Michigan Bicyclists website at www.lmb.org for more information.
Kalamazoo Bike Week Offers Several Events to Celebrate Cycling
Kalamazoo Bike Week, which runs May 13-21, 2017, is all about celebrating cycling. It promotes cycling advocacy, awareness, education and most importantly, fun. Many events are planned this year.
Mayor’s City-to-City Ride
Join Mayors Peter Strazdas of Portage and Bobby Hopewell of Kalamazoo on a 7.2-mile route as they ride from Portage, into Kalamazoo and then back to Portage on Saturday, May 13. Meet at Portage Creek Bicentennial Park Trail on Milham Avenue (910 East Milham Avenue). Arrive by 8:30 a.m. to register for this free ride, which starts promptly at 9 a.m. The ride will lead cyclists along the PCBP Trail and on the Kalamazoo Bike Route system before returning to PCBP, and provides the opportunity for a stop at a beautiful overlook of Portage Creek. Participants will be asked to sign a release form and are required to wear a helmet. While a good portion of the route is made up of off-road trails or pathways, some of the route uses paved shoulder bicycle lanes adjacent to city streets and may not be suitable for young children. To view the Mayor’s City-to-City Ride route map, visit www.kalamazoobikeweek.com.
Bicycle Safety Camp
The 2017 Bicycle Safety Camp will be held at Haverhill Park (6577 Hampton Street) on Saturday, May 13 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Children in need of a bicycle helmet will receive one free, along with a helmet fitting. Bicycle must be present. Learn about bike safety on an obstacle course and ride a segment of the Northwest Portage Bikeway with Portage Police bike officers and park rangers! Take a picture with local mascots and get “hands on” with a fire truck, ambulance and police car. Local bike mechanics will be present to “tune up” your ride.
Ride of Silence
On Wednesday, May 17, 2017, the Ride of Silence will begin at Millennium Park (280 Romence Road). Cyclists will take to the roads in a silent procession to honor cyclists who have been killed or injured while cycling on public roadways and to raise awareness of cyclists’ legal rights to the public roadways. The Ride of Silence is a free ride. Cyclists are asked to ride no faster than 12 mph, wear helmets, follow the rules of the road and remain silent during the ride. Registration is free and begins at 6:30 p.m. The ride will start promptly at 7 p.m. Children must be accompanied by an adult.
Local Bicycling Developments - 2017 & Beyond
Learn first-hand from area leaders about how to make a community even more bicycle friendly and what biking developments are in store for the region. This one-hour event will be held on Wednesday, May 17, from 4 to 5 p.m. at the Wile Auditorium at KRESA (1819 East Milham Avenue). The meeting will focus on the experiences of some progressive local organizations and provide an opportunity to ask questions and share thoughts with speakers. Speakers include representatives from the City of Portage, Bronson Healthcare Group and Western Michigan University. Visit www.katsmpo.org to register. This event is jointly sponsored by the Kalamazoo Area Transportation Study and Bike Friendly Kalamazoo.