Racing began at 4:30 with Junior categories, followed by Women's Cat 4s, then the 1/2/3 combined field. Next were the Men's combined 4/5 field (which was sold out at 75 riders), and ending with the Men's combined 1/2/3 race.
If you sat this one out to see what would happen, expect fuller fields at race #2 on July 1st, so be sure to preregister. Day-of licenses are available at the registration table, or 2009 USCF lisences are still worth the $65 should you get in more than six races this year. There are plenty of opportunities to make it worth your while.
It has taken some time this year to obtain the list of permitted events that may affect your use of the Lakefront Trail. I apologize for the delay. I will attempt to post a list of events every week. Please check this blog for that weekly update.
Friday, June 19th - No permitted events reported
Saturday, June 20th - Take Steps for Crohn's and Colitis, Grant Park-Great Lawn SF, 5:30-8:30 p.m.
Save A Life Wellness Walk, Run and Bike Picnic, Jackson Park-South of Parking lot, 8:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.
19th Annual Chicago Pro Am (1 of 3), North Ave. Beach, 7:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m.
Men's Fitness Ultimate Athlete 2009, North Ave Beach, 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
Nike Run Club, Lincoln Park, 6:00-9:00 a.m.
Hunger Walk, Lincoln Park-Grove 16, 8:00 a.m.-Noon
Summerfest 5K 'Phat Run', Lincoln Park-Diversey Harbor, 8:30-10:00 a.m.
Sunday, June 21st - No permitted events reported
TC O'Rourke shared this story the other day on a list serve. I thought it would be great to share it with our blog readers (with thanks to TC for allowing us to reprint).
Yesterday, I renewed my drivers license. It had expired in Nov. 2006 and I'd probably not driven in the 6 months proceeding, so I'm gonna claim 3 full years without having been behind the wheel. Not a bad run.
During my visit there was the obligatory wait in the wrong line. There were text-messaging employees of marginal intelligence. (One asked for my license, then told me she couldn't accept it, because it was expired.) The Feng Shui of the place was all jived up; at one point I wandered into a break room.
But these annoyances did not compare to the road test.
Upon climbing into the vehicle, my tester immediately began to poke at the dash, trying activate the air-conditioning. When it was running full blast, I attempted to close the windows and she cried out as if I were sealing her tomb. "STOP!!" she yelled. "I need to hear the sirens." I briefly imagined the test was to include eluding the police.
My tester had all the patience of a 6 year old. "The speed limit here is 30 not 20" she snapped at one point. Since it wasn't posted, I'd decided to play it safe; regardless, I don't recall any minimum and, not to toot my own car-horn, I have recently been tested on road laws.
"Now pull up" my tester barked at each intersection, before we'd even come to a stop. I began to wonder if her orders were code for "Look: I don't care if you come to a complete and full stop behind the stop bar, let's just get this over-- Jeopardy is on." But then I envisioned it all as some sort of trap. "Do you think you can break the law just because your passenger says so?" she'd say, failing me. It would be devious, but I wasn't taking any chances.
Finally, as we approached the facility on Elston I stopped behind a left turning pickup, at which point she let our a loud, frustrated sigh. We sat a few seconds and she began to fidget. "Uh-ho" I thought, suddenly realizing why each oncoming car had a little orange flag.
"You can go around" she said pointing to the *bike lane*.
This statement was made without her usual curtness, almost softly, under her breath. Yeah, she knew.
I began to sweat. "I don't think..." I literally bit my tongue. My mind raced generating replies that would send the conversation on a downward spiral.
I wasn't going to lecture her on the law. I wasn't going to say I didn't mind the delay.
And I sure as hell wasn't going to drive in the fucking bike lane during my road test.
She knew and I knew and then she knew I knew. It was only a matter of time before she knew I knew she knew and each further knowing would get uglier.
"I think..." but no other words followed. Time stood still. I cocked my head an pointed in the general direction of the bike lane. I had nothing.
Then, by some miracle, the last of the mourners passed and the pickup completed his turn.
I took my right foot off the brake pedal and applied it to the gas pedal, hands at 10 and 2. She resumed her impatient cattiness as I piloted the vehicle through carefully arranged cones in the parking lot. I don't look bad in the photo.
Good grief, it's no wonder motorists don't respect bike lanes.
Oh my, is there bike love in the Southland, enough to turn gray skies to blue. We killed a quarter barrel of beer and ate everything Flossmoor Station, our Bike After Work co-host, could throw at us. Bike club turnout included Folks on Spokes, Oak Lawn Bike Psychos, Major Taylor Chicago Cycling Club, South Chicago Wheelmen, and Chicago Cycling Meetup. Deputy chief of police Jim Gannon dropped by, as did the Village of Tinley Park's planning staff and South Chicago Wheelmen president Steve Feehery, comuunications director of the Chicago Southland Convention & Visitors Bureua Bob Lukens, the National Park Service's Diane Banta, and Active Trans staff Carolyn Helmke, Katie Tulley, and Matthew Griffen.
ActiveTrans's Footprints coaches had a field day, collecting dozens of surveys from folks wanting to make just one trip a week some other way than driving. And Friends of the Calumet-Sag Trail sold more than 50 raffle tickets toward matching $260,000 in federal funds to build the Calumet-Sag Trail. Plus we killed a quarter barrel of Flossmoor Station's Zephyr Golden Ale and trays of wings and other happy hour food.
Find the pictures here!
This just in from REI:
"I’m writing as an employee of REI to give a heads-up to bike commuters all over Chicago about a new, free bike-commuting application we just announced for iPhones. If you have a second-generation iPhone (with GPS capability), we suggest you check it out and download it!
With the goal of getting more people on bikes and fewer people visiting the gas pump, REI’s new application helps you track, view, and share your bicycling experiences. Whether it’s a daily commute, or a long training ride with friends, the customizable App allows you to view your bicycling progress including location, average speed, distance, elevation, compass heading, time elapsed and calories burned. Additionally, you can pinpoint your location, save bicycle mileage, upload geotagged photos to document the ride (or share with friends), measure gas savings as well as individual CO2 offset.
We hope it will be a great tool for everyone who’s already pedaling to work and a great inspiration for more people to leave their cars behind. We’d enjoy hearing about your experience and reading your comments on this post to let us know how this App works for you. We’re always interested to make new and better tools to boost bicycling and we’d appreciate your thoughts and insights on how to do this."
Bike to Work Week is on! Team leaders from across the region have been working hard to get their coworkers in the saddle. Check out some great work done by team leaders:
Elizabeth Adamczyk and Sarah McVicar at Northwestern University Library have been super busy! Check out this website that Sarah put together. Additionally, they are organizing a Bike Mentor program that matches experienced commuters with new, first time commuters.
Ken Dorado at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois put together this blog with great information on nearby bike parking, bike rentals, bike events and showers. There is even a poll to gather information from company cyclists to help determine what cyclists want from the group.
Jennifer Brand and Beth Azuma at the Adler Planetarium help maintain the Bike to Work Boardcf where everyone can get their hands on maps and other great information about biking to work.
Johanna Thompson has been leading the way as the Field Museum seeks to defend their title from 2008. What makes a champion? Raffling a new ipod for people who participate in the commuter challenge. Co-hosting a commuter station during Bike to Work Week. Putting Bike to Work Week on the front page of their employee newsletter. Oh and raffling off a re-furbished bike to those who participate in their bike to work week events (like lunch-time rides), use their company’s shared bikes, or become members of the Active Transportation Alliance. On top of that, they hosted an in office Bike Repair Day to make sure everyone's bikes were 'ride-ready.'
These team leaders and others have raised the bar.
Are you a team leader? Now is the time to submit your team's results. Make sure to log every participating member of the team to enter them in a raffle for great prizes from Planet Bike! Category winners will recieve prizes at the team leader awards luncheon.
Local transit agencies are celebrating the fourth annual National Dump the Pump Day in response to increasing gas prices.
The Regional Transportation Authority (RTA), Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), Metra and Pace join public transportation systems nationwide to participate in the Fourth Annual National Dump the Pump Day on June 18. Sponsored by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), the 2009 National Dump the Pump Day offers commuters an alternative to driving, by encouraging them to ride public transportation for the day, saving money, protecting the environment, reducing our dependence on foreign oil, and improving our quality of life.
“With the economic downturn affecting everyone, now is the time to save money and ride public transportation,” said Steve Schlickman, RTA Executive Director. “The National Dump the Pump Day on June 18 is an opportunity for people across the country to ease the strain on their wallets and provide a more secure future for America.”
Individuals can save an average of more than $8,000 annually by taking public transportation instead of driving. For every $1 invested in public transportation infrastructure, $6 is generated in economic returns to communities, according to APTA.
Public transportation saves 900,000 automobile fill-ups each day – 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline per year and switching to public transportation can reduce individual carbon emissions by 20 pounds per day or 4,800 pounds per year, according to APTA.
“Taking advantage of the transit benefit allowance may help riders stretch their transit dollars even further,” said T.J. Ross, Pace’s Executive Director. “We encourage our daily riders and new riders, to take advantage of this important transit benefit to keep more money in their pockets.”
Biking to work has it's own rewards. Today, one of the awards is beer.
Footprints invites you to the Bike After Work Happy Hour at Flossmoor Station Brewery today, 5-7:30 PM. The station, at 1025 Sterling Ave. in Flossmoor [get map], is also the Metra station, and has plenty of bike & car parking. If you come by horse or hang glider, you're on your own.
On hand - Southland bike and racing clubs. Lots of good looking and friendly Southland bike riders [the best kind of bike riders]. Happy hour food. A quarter barrel of Zephyr Golden Ale [courtesy of Flossmoor Station]. And the famous Footprints coaches, ready to help you put more biking and walking into your daily life.
We'll give stuff away, put on fix-a-flat and commuting tips demonstrations, and drink beer - Flossmoor Station was judged to be the Best Small Brew Pub Brewer in America at the Great American Beer Festival. The root beer is good too.
To get in: show us your ActiveTrans member card, wear a bike ride or club jersey or T-shirt, or show us your helmet, a bike lock/key, or that you love biking, or want to love biking but came to find out more.
Find your own way, or join the Footprints coaches at the Homewood or Olympia Fields Metra stations at 5:45 PM, and they'll lead you in. [If it's storming, safety before fun - they'll likely drive or train to the station.]
Look for me there. I'll be the one drinking beer.
Mayor Rich Hofeld and Trustee Anne Colton helped the Active Transportation Alliance, Homewood-Flossmoor Park District and Caribou Coffee celebrate walkers, bikers, and one skater this morning at the Homewood Metra station. We served 70 cups of coffee, shook a ton of hands, and took lots of pictures. Enjoy!