President's Paceline March 2023
Jane Fletcher | Published on 3/23/2023
We have lots of biking coming up in 2023!
First of all, Save the Date, Saturday October 28th for the 2023 Spaghetti 100! This year we will be looking for riders and volunteers to help ensure that we put on another successful event. Jim Mann will be integral to putting on the Spaghetti 100 again this year, but we will also be putting together a team of volunteers to work with Jim so that he doesn’t have to carry the whole load. If you would be willing to help out by serving on the Spaghetti 100 team this year please let me 850-294-1840 or Jim 850-422-0302 know.
Next, we have started a new Sunday morning club ride led by Vernon Bailey. Vernon is a new member of the club who has been cycling for 50 years. He likes to ride road, gravel and mountain bikes and his favorite rides are small group riding and weekend touring. Vernon likes to meet new faces and comes to us from Washington DC. The ride starts from Bicycle House and generally goes down the Cascades and St Marks trails and will sometimes take a loop through Southwood, but the route could vary based on what the group wants. This is a fun multigenerational ride that moves right along but regroups periodically so that no one gets dropped. Ride pace is 12 to 16 mph. Watch for posts of this ride on Facebook and in the event calendar on cccyclists.org.
Our regular weekly and monthly rides continue, watch for their announcements on Facebook and on the event calendar on the club’s website. Monthly rides include the first Saturday relaxed 10 10 10 ride and the second Saturday ride to eat. Come on out and check out one of these rides. If you have another ride idea please let us know or if you would like to become a ride leader please email email@example.com.
We also will have our second bike get together on Friday, May 5th at 5:30 for food and drink and 6:15 for the program. Since it’s Cinco de Mayo we will have Mexican themed food and drinks. This time the program will be on the type of gear you need for bike packing or touring, and a how to session on fixing mechanical issues while on the road. We will gather at Bicycle House again. Please sign up on Facebook or the club website so we know how much food and drink to buy.
Our Meals on Two Wheels group continues to deliver meals for elder care services by bike. If you would like to join them, show up at the Ocala Rd Panera at 10:00 AM on Monday or Thursday.
For our next event of the spring, Jim Mann has put together a two day ride in south GA. The Capital City Cyclists’ Vagabonds are offering all club members an opportunity to take an overnight bike tour from Thomasville, GA to Valdosta, GA on 4/15 & 4/16. The start and end of this tour will be at the Lowes store next to Hwy 300/19 in Thomasville where overnight parking will be provided. The ride will be mainly on country roads with low traffic and the distance covered each day will be in the low 40 mile range. The ride will have a support van to carry luggage and provide SAG support as needed. Members will be asked to take turns driving the van a few miles. Our motel will be the Sleep Inn & Suites in Valdosta and supper will be at the nearby Olive Garden. For further information call Jim Mann, 850-422-0302
We are looking at the option of putting together a self supported club trip on ride the Silver Comet and Chief Ladiga Trails which run from outside Atlanta to Anniston Ala. The ride would likely be in May. The contiguous trails stretch for 93 miles one way. The trip would be designed as either a 2 day or 4 day ride to do the entire trail. The two day ride would include two approximately 50 mile days and a shuttle back to the beginning. The 4 day ride would include 4 approximately 50 mile days to go out and back on the trail. If you think you might be interested we have set up a survey to gather information on members' level of interest to see if we should move forward with planning this trip. Please go to the following link to let us know what you think: Silver Comet Survey
Watch for our traditional Bastille day ride and picnic on July 16th. We are looking at sites for the event currently and are hoping to have a venue with water for swimming since it will likely be beastly hot in July.
On March 11th and 12th we had the choose your own adventure ride to explore the coastal trail including the newly completed sections. 36 riders participated in this ride for either one day or two and explored the new trail, many lunched in Panacea, some walked on the beach at Mashes Sands while others checked out the Gulf Marine Specimens Lab. The folks who participated seemed to enjoy the event and suggested making it an annual event. Look for this event again next year.
Eric Draper and the cycling advocacy committee have been busy keeping up with cycling safety and identifying ways that we as a club can help improve the situation in this area.
One area that has recently become a focus of our efforts is our concern with the plans to extend Dempsey Mayo Road across the Miccosukee Greenway into the Canopy development. Our primary concern is that the planned roadway significantly impacts existing recreational and trail uses and will pose great risks to non-motorized users. We recognize that the original deed for the Greenway included optional reservations for roads. However, over 25 years the Greenway has become a beloved and much celebrated public park and trail system with many users. Current uses and users should be given more weight in the design than facilitating new traffic flows. The road expansion will lead to loss of safe recreation uses for current and future users.
We are asking that planning and permitting for the road expansion be halted until there is adequate public input on the plans. We recognize that at some point in the past there was stakeholder input. However, we don’t know that that input reflects the views of actual park users. Any time there is a plan for a road to bisect a park, especially a park on state owned conservation land, the public and users should be fully involved at every step.
The safety features planned for the road are not adequate. The road appears to be planned to facilitate fast movement of traffic, thereby placing all responsibility for safe crossing on trail users. As currently planned, runners, walkers, families strolling children and cyclists will be forced to stop and wait until it appears safe to cross.
SUN Trail Network
The Legislature is considering a bill this session designed to move forward the construction of more multi use trails. SB 106 expands the existing shared use nonmotorized (SUN) trail network and enhances the coordination of the trail system with the Wildlife corridor. It also doubles the annual appropriation to $50 million and provides the agency with a non recurring appropriation of $200 million for planning. The bill is being heard next week in the Senate Transportation Committee. Link to Senate Bill 106.
Kids on Bikes
Our Kids on Bikes program with Leon County Schools is going strong. As you may recall Ken Foster, TMBA and CCC got the program off the ground, with the first bikes as well as initial curriculum training for teachers. Now CCC is sheparding this program. This semester our bikes will support the bicycle safety programs at the following elementary schools. Jan - Hawkes Rise Feb - Hartsfield Mar - School of Arts & Sciences Apr - Conley May - Fort Braden
The CCC bikes received kudos from staff at Hawkes Rise as the best maintained bikes in the Kids on Bikes program. At Hartsfield they gave kudos to the CCC trailer full of bikes because the all the bikes were in great shape for the next school. Kudos to Brett at Hawkes Rise for having the bikes all ready for the next school.
Would you like to help out with the Kids on Bikes program?
We are in urgent need of a volunteer with a full size tow vehicle (truck or SUV) with electronic brake controller for the trailer brakes to help in moving the bikes from one school to another. This happens about 8 times a year. In addition, there are times when 4-wheel drive is helpful - muddy fields and very steep inclines. If you are able to help out once or on a more regular basis email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. We could really use some help with this.
A big thank you to our partner Bicycle House for their behind-the-scenes work in servicing and maintaining the bicycle fleet. In addition, we had some expenses this year related to maintaining the trailer that is used to store the bikes and move them from school to school. We are also currently looking into the possibility of buying some additional bikes in larger sizes to better fit some of the taller fifth graders.