What started in Victoria, B.C. in 1995 as an initiative to unite commuter cyclists in a common goal of reducing greenhouse gases and transportation congestion has grown to become a province-wide movement with almost 50,000 participants last year.
This year, Bike to Work or School Week is changing its name and branding to become Go By Bike Week. The change reflects the desire to encourage people to use their bikes for transportation as often as possible, regardless of the intent of their trip.
This year is also the fifth year Summerland has officially participated and the district hopes to make it the biggest year yet. Residents of Summerland are encouraged to register online by visiting the Bike to Work Week page for Summerland at www.biketowork.ca/summerland. Registration takes just a few minutes and for those who have registered in the past, it’s very quick to get set up for 2018.
Once registered, participants will be eligible to win the grand prize of an all-inclusive cycling trip for two to the Atlantic coast of Portugal. Summerland residents will also have the opportunity to win a full entry (including shuttle) into the Okanagan Trestle Tour on July 1, a bucket list ride for cyclists living in the Okanagan. To be eligible for either grand prize, residents must be registered and log their kilometres online. There are plenty of other draw prizes to be won so the district encourages everyone to register and Go By Bike as often as possible from May 28 to June 3.
“Our council has identified health and wellness and environmental sustainability as strategic priorities for our community,” said Mayor Peter Waterman. “The District of Summerland is a world-class biking destination for recreational cyclists and we want to also promote commuter cycling, especially during Go By Bike Week when residents can be recognized for their efforts to avoid driving and we can celebrate cycling as a community.”
Each day from Monday to Friday between 7:3o and 9 a.m., a celebration station tent will be set up adjacent to the Okanagan Regional Library on Main Street (across from the new bike hub) where riders can stop in and enjoy a cold drink and a snack, pick up some biking swag and log their kilometres for the day. Every day features a different community sponsor supplying refreshments and helping staff the celebration station.
Senior reporter, Penticton Western News
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