Tag Archives: ride solutions

Let’s Go for a Ride!

When I was a kid in Southern California, “let’s go for a ride” usually meant a long family drive through the mountains or skirting the desert basins far outside of the city. Sometimes, we would take curving cliffside roads that afforded a view of the Pacific. The vistas were incredible, though generally relegated to the opposite side of a window, and came at the cost of a few gallons of gas and the risk of motion sickness.

Now, “let’s go for a ride” has a different meaning. Once spring finally muscles winter out of the way and everyone is eager to get outside, my daughter and I strap on our helmets and hit the Roanoke River Greenway on our bicycles. Each year, there’s more of the greenway to explore. It is as if small, secret parts of our city are constantly being revealed, opening themselves up for adventure.

jeremyPenelope loves the freedom and speed of the bicycle. She loves moving under her own power, and she loves the real sense of growing stronger she gets each year as she’s able to ride faster, for longer distances, and up steeper hills. I, of course, simply enjoy being along for the ride and sharing these experiences with her.

Some of the best parts of the trip, though, having nothing to do with riding, but come from the spontaneous moments of discovery that being on a bicycle allows:

  • Coming across a bridge and deciding, all of a sudden, that what we really want to do is hop off the bikes and explore the banks along the stream that runs underneath it.
  • Stopping to watch a heron stalk a stretch of low water, dipping its head under the surface as it hunts for fish.
  • Making friends with a tailless stray cat who has taken up ownership of nearby playground.
  • Drowsing in the grass, helmets still on, watching the clouds drift past the tree branches high above.

What you can do on a bicycle that you can’t do in a car is stop, right where you are, and explore. You never have to worry about your kids spotting something fascinating, only to have them struggle to describe it long after you have driven past. You can take a moment to appreciate the small and sudden. Best of all, you can let your child take the lead, and their curiosity take the wheel.

Visit http://www.ridesolutions.org to see how you can get out and ride this summer!

Written by Jeremy Holmes

Clean Commute Challenge from Ride Solutions

May is officially here and it is time to step up our responsibility as active commuters to protect the environment! 

CCC-convoy-2013Over the course of the next month, RIDE Solutions is encouraging commuters to bike, walk, carpool, take transit, or telecommute. 

RIDE Solutions, the region’s popular commuter service program, challenges area commuters to take the Clean Commute Pledge. This is a great way to explore your commute options at least one day during the month.

To make the challenge more exciting, RIDE Solutions has opened it up to trips that aren’t exclusively work-related. “While commute trips have a huge impact, we know that most trips a household takes are not related to the daily commute,” says Program Director Jeremy Holmes. “We want people to try carpooling, biking, walking and transit for all kinds of trips – whether it’s carpooling to lunch with coworkers, riding a bike to see a movie, or walking to the store instead of driving.”

In addition to taking the pledge, participants can get more involved by logging their clean trips throughout the month.  Each trip logged gives participants an entry into weekly prize drawings.  Finally, participants can start or join an existing Clean Commute Team, counting each logged trip towards their team performance and earning bigger and better prizes.  Team performance and miles logged will be tracked at the Clean Commute Challenge leaderboard.

“Using a clean commute option, even one day a week, has immediate benefits for both commuters and our communities,” says Holmes.  “It’s a simple way to enjoy the region’s many outdoor amenities, make our communities stronger and cleaner, and actually have fun getting to work.”

The Clean Commute Challenge is one of a number of events organized by RIDE Solutions to celebrate Bike Month. Join the Poppyseed family in celebrating a clean commute and make your pledge today!