Spinning wheels: Sign-ups begin for 3rd Bike to Work Challenge | SierraSun.com

Spinning wheels: Sign-ups begin for 3rd Bike to Work Challenge

Sun News Service

For more information, to sign up for the Challenge, or to be a sponsorgo to the Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition’s Web site at http://www.tahoebike.org or contact Karen Fink, Transportation Planner, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, at (775) 588-4547, ext. 204 or kfink@trpa.org.

With soaring gas prices and more people driving less these days, it’s not too early to begin thinking about the return of warm weather and trading in your four wheels for a pair instead.

With May designated as National Bike to Work month, there’s even a Lake Tahoe competition planned for those companies and agencies who have cyclists on their payroll.

The Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition, the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, and other organizations and agencies have collaborated to bring the third-annual Bike to Work Challenge to the region.

Now is the time for those interested to begin forming bicycle teams and for potential sponsors to come forward, organizers say.

Last year 255 bicyclists and 29 teams rode a total of 6,980 miles during the 2007 Bike to Work Challenge.

Recommended Stories For You

The California Tahoe Conservancy, with the help of the Tahoe-Baikal Institute, won last year’s event, edging out the U.S. Forest Service and the TRPA for most miles ridden. The winning team topped out with 692 miles.

For this year’s Bike to Work Challenge, individuals and workplace-based teams will once again be asked to join in friendly competition to see who can get the most employees riding to work.

The Challenge also highlights individuals and organizations who ride the most miles and who gain the most elevation during their ride to work.

“The Challenge is a great way to get people energized about the bike riding season, and to get some people who might not ordinarily ride out on their bikes,” said Ty Polastri, president of the Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition. “Last year (255) participants rode almost 7,000 miles. That kept the equivalent of about 6,300 pounds of carbon dioxide out of Tahoe’s atmosphere. This year we hope to double our mileage with even more participants.”

Karen Fink, a TRPA transportation planner, said bicycle and pedestrian connections are priorities for the agency.

“Getting people out on their bikes and familiar with the existing bicycle network is an important piece of the puzzle in bringing planning and public needs into alignment,” Fink said.

A team of volunteer Bike to Work organizers has been planning Bike to Work month activities, including Bike Fix-It Booths at North and South Shore Earth Days, coffee stops, t- shirts, and donations for a daily drawing for participants.

For more information, to sign up for the Challenge, or to be a sponsorgo to the Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition’s Web site at http://www.tahoebike.org or contact Karen Fink, Transportation Planner, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, at (775) 588-4547, ext. 204 or kfink@trpa.org.