Cascade’s May policy rides and Bike Happy Hours kick off today on E Marginal Way

Everyone, the WORST THING IMAGINABLE has happened.

Tonight, there are two different bike events with Schooner Exact beer and great bike advocacy folks happening AT THE SAME TIME. It’s not fair. Clearly a #SeattleBikeMonthProblem

Cascade Bicycle Club is hosting a policy ride and Bike Happy Hour every Thursday during May. Each ride starts at 4:30 and tours a different part of the city so people can discuss the successes and issues with biking in each area. The rides end at a bar or brewery for a Bike Happy Hour, starting at 5:30.

The rides kick off today with an E Marginal Way policy ride that meets in Occidental Park and ends at Schooner Exact in Sodo.

Yes, 5:30 is the same time as the Cycling Sojourner book release party at Washington Bikes in Pioneer Square. They will also celebrate the release of Ale-Liance, an annual Schooner Exact IPA batch that supports WA Bikes.

But I guess I had better get used to conflicting fun bike events this month. With 80+ May bike events on our events calendar, there’s just going to be some overlap. And having too many bikey things happening sure is a great problem to have.

More details on the May policy rides and Bike Happy Hours:

BikeHappyHourMonth_m1-650

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11 Responses to Cascade’s May policy rides and Bike Happy Hours kick off today on E Marginal Way

  1. Andy says:

    We really are spoiled here. Happy #BikeMonth!

    As a minor gripe, I do wish Cascade and our bike advocacy community in general would stop using the phrase “fast and furious cyclists.” It feels like it carries a fairly negative connotation, which (I’m hoping?) isn’t intended.

    • Josh says:

      I’m not sure it’s unintended.. take a look at the disparaging comments about “tour de commute” riders after people questioned a 10 mph design speed on Westlake, as if riding 15 mph is reckless and anti-social.

      There’s clearly a segment of the cycling advocacy community that’s actively hostile to people who ride above a fast pedestrian pace.

      • Matthew Snyder says:

        Josh, c’mon man, there were 60 comments in that Westlake thread, and of those 60 comments, only one could maybe be considered “disparaging” towards faster cyclists.

        Cascade would cease to exist as an organization if they succeeded in alienating “fast and furious” cyclists. That’s their bread and butter.

      • Josh says:

        I’m not saying it’s an official Cascade policy or anything, just that there’s definitely a strong undercurrent of contempt in many communications from Cascade and elsewhere towards the “fast and furious,” “strong and fearless,” or whatever other phrase they choose to make it clear fast cyclists are “them,” not “us.”

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        “Fast and furious” is a clumsy way of putting it. And to a lesser extent so is “strong and fearless.” But the distinction is important: Some people are willing to bike on streets like Rainier Ave (the route noted with that label above), and others would not do that in a million years (or are simply willing to go out of their way to avoid it).

        I don’t think it’s wise to alienate people who are willing to bike on busy streets (I’m one of them!). But in the past, bike stuff seemed to be geared only toward them (sharrows on busy streets, for example). The effective message was: “Well, some people can bike safely on busy roads, so if you don’t want to then you’re the problem.” That’s BS that alienates huge numbers of people who might have otherwise been interested in biking, and there was a need to reframe the discussion.

        I think the labels are an attempt to change that dynamic, though perhaps they have served their purpose (BMP suggests the point has been received). “Strong and Fearless” should not be used as a disparaging code word for the “Lance Armstrong wannabe” stereotype.

        But in the context of Rainier Ave, it is relevant (even if “fearless” is not necessarily accurate). Here’s a fast route that people who don’t mind biking in busy traffic. Here’s a more roundabout route that is mostly calm.

        I’ve also heard people use skiing terms to make the same point. Right now, Seattle bike routes are full of black diamond runs, but we need more green runs. That’s a good analogy, though skiing brings its own danger, demographic and class connotations.

        Language is hard. No single term seems to define the idea perfectly, but it’s a key one. That’s why I like the “all ages and abilities” phrase. It does not (or at least should not) mean NO FAST CYCLISTS. Instead, it means that everyone should feel comfortable there.

      • Andy says:

        I certainly can’t think of a term that is both concise and avoids all the undertones of the ones currently used, and I absolutely recognize the need for planners to have a way to designate who the intended users of a facility are.
        Nevertheless, the terms are loaded, and the description of “strong and fearless” cyclists as being willing to ride regardless of the facilities available marginalizes the importance of making safe facilities for everyone – including those of us who ride on unsafe streets out of necessity now.

      • Andy says:

        Edit: Meant to add, as a design and planning term, “all ages and abilities” *does* mean no fast cyclists. That’s part of the problem with using a soft-and-fuzzy term in a design document.
        Again, not claiming to be able to come up with better terms, just pointing out that the design terms adopted in the current bike master plan are potentially quite confusing to a lay audience.

  2. Jayne says:

    Rides not for people with regular jobs eh.

  3. Emma says:

    Can’t wait for this policy ride! I decided to get to work 30 minutes early so I can make it on this ride!

    So many great things happening during Bike Month this year!

    • RTK says:

      Speaking of East Marginal, it has gotten progressively worse this week near the Museum of Flight due to construction. Now restricted to one lane in each direction for about half a mile, sidewalks closed on both sides.

      Be careful.

  4. Double D says:

    I was just wondering why Cascade doesn’t do more to educate new and veteran cyclists regarding the rules of the road and proper etiquette around other cyclists, i.e. passing on the right instead of left, going around them while they are stopped at lights (and subsequently running the light), etc.?

    It’s great that more people are pedaling, but with that comes the responsibility to ride safely and predictably. Cascade should be doing more on their part to educate cyclists while promoting the benefits and joys of riding – and this a perfect time to do so!

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