Saturday, December 24, 2011

Happy Holidays To All!

All of us at GSB wish you and yours a Merry Christmas, a Happy Hanukah, and a Blessed Holiday Season.  (And, if you’re opening gifts, we hope one of those packages contains one of the things your little biking heart has been longing for.)  If like me you are giving gifts that keep on giving for a long time (bikes and bike stuff), remember to support our local bike retailers!  (Sandie) 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

If It's Warm Enough to Ski, It's Warm Enough To Bike!

Shorewoodians and GSB members Tom & Mara Kuhlman, winter bike commuting together to work downtown on the OLT. 

Oh so cool, and oh so stylish. 
Now that snow is on the ground, this gives you the chance to take what would otherwise be an unsafe, boring drive in your cold and polluting car, into an epic adventure!  As was indicated at the recent Riverwest symposium on winter bike commuting, whether you drive or you bike, when you first walk out of the house, guess what, it be cold!  But the good thing about bike commuting is 30 to 60 seconds later, you're biking and about that time, you're probably already warm.  Whereas if you're in your car, your car might take 5 to 10 minutes to warm up, you're completely unconnected to nature, and when you get to where you're going, you've probably got to trudge some distance from where you park, to where you work.  Guess what, you be cold again!  Not so the bike commuter, who arrives at work nice and warm (in fact, for the novice winter commuter, too much warmth is usually a greater problem than too much cold).  Upon arrival, the biker parks right next to the entrance, and walks in refreshed, healthy and ready for the day.  And snow on the ground in Milwaukee increases ambient light, so it's not near as dark out as it is when there is no snow on the ground, and you are biking home in the evening.  In short, biking is a better way to get to and from work, or the store, no matter what the temperature.  Booyah! (Sandie)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Winter Biking, BOOYAH!

Tis the Season for some winter biking.  Why just drive to work, when you could make your commute into an epic adventure instead? "Neither snow nor rain nor sleet nor gloom of night stays these cyclists from the swift completion of their appointed rounds" It's good to see that despite the darkness and the cold, we're still seeing a goodly number of morning and evening bike commuters out on the OLT (including your GSB leaders, Doc Waters and J.Doc Pendleton).

If you are interested in getting the fully skinny on how fun and easy winter biking and commuting can be, consider attending the Get Your Cog On - Winter Biking Forum. Our friends at MKE Bike Collective hosting what should be a really cool event at the Riverwest Public House (just across the River, at 815 E Locust Street). Here are the details:
  • 6pm to 8pm- Winter Biking Forum
  • 9pm to 12am- Dance Party
  • $5 Cover Charge; includes Raffle Ticket to win a Bike
  • All benefits the Milwaukee Bicycle Collective
  • Come learn and share the wonders of winter biking and then dance your cogs off to celebrate another year of the Milwaukee Bicycle Collective!
Hope to see you there (though not necessarily see you dance).  Bike there or be square.  (Sandie)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

DOT Hearing on the Hoan Bridge

On Monday, November 14 from 5 to 7 p.m., the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT) will be holding a public hearing to discuss the different construction plans and cost estimates that resulted from the DOT's DRAFT feasibility study, which examined adding a bike/ped path to the Hoan Bridge. The hearing will take place in the DOT downtown office building located at 1001 West St. Paul Avenue in Milwaukee.

It is important that cyclists turn out to this hearing, as DOT is looking to hear directly from Milwaukee County citizens before choosing a final project proposal. We need to make sure that DOT and the Governor know that there remains a strong interest in the community for a bike/ped path on the Hoan.  Although GSB does not itself lobby, there is nothing wrong with individual members voicing their support for a bike path on the Hoan. We urge you to to attend this meeting to voice any support you may have in your heart for the bike lane and ask questions of DOT staff members.  Given the conclusions stated in DOT's draft report, getting a bike/ped path on the Hoan, as part of the bridge reconstruction, is going to be an uphill fight.  If this path does not get built now, it will be decades before cyclists and pedestrians get a chance to get a safe and beautiful path on the Hoan. We hope to see you there. 

However, if you cannot attend the hearing, and you have questions or comments, you can pass along your comments to Carolynn Gellings from DOT, at:

Carolynn Gellings, P.E. Project Manager
Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT)
Southeast Region
141 NW Barstow Street
P.O. Box 798
Waukesha, WI 53187-0798
(262) 548-8716

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Bike Fed Fundraiser

Mark your calendars for Wisconsin's biggest bicycle bash of the year.  November 12th, 2011 is the 8th annual Saris Gala benefiting the Bicycle Federation of Wisconsin.  The event includes live and silent auction items, food and beverages (including complementary wine and New Belgium beer).
Main Celebration
6:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Cost: $40 online before Nov. 1, $50 online on/after Nov. 1, or $60 for purchase
at the door
Register Online for the Main Celebration
There is also a special VIP reception event before the main celebration, honoring Jim Ochowicz and members of the 1986 7-Eleven Cycling Team.  This year marks the 25th anniversary of the team's being the first U.S. cycling team to participate in the Tour de France.  The 7-Eleven Team made history that summer and started a new chapter in American pro cycling and cycling culture.
VIP Reception
5:30 pm to 6:30 pm
Team 7-Eleven
$150 per person (includes Main Celebration ticket, limited tickets available). With the purchase of a VIP ticket you will receive the book Team 7-Eleven, the amazing story of how two cycling fans found one exceptional sponsor and created the greatest American cycling team of its era. This is a rare opportunity to have your book signed by co-author Jim Ochowicz and members of the team.
Register Online for the VIP Reception
Hope to see you there.  (Sandie)

Saturday, October 8, 2011

BFC Celebration Report

We had a good turnout of about 30 people at out BFC celebration, including Village President Guy Johnson, and two trustees.  One of the things we did at the celebration was to ask attendees to write down the ideas they had for what would make Shorewood a better place to live and bike.  Here (in no particular order), are the ideas attendees provided:   
1.       So as to promote bike commuting:
a.       Work to have the south parking lot at Estabrook Park designated as a daytime “Park and Bike” lot.
b.      Promote 2012 Bike to Work Week.
c.       Sponsor a winter Bike to Work Day.  
d.      Provide treats for bike commuters on the OLT one day during Bike to Work Week, or some other work-day during the summer.  
2.       So as to convince more people in Shorewood to grocery shop or run other errands using their bike, rather than a car: 
a.   Convince a Shorewood business or group to purchase and advertise on (or sell advertisements on) “Shorewood Bike Shopping Carts” (think like Burley bike trailers), then sell or lease those carts to Shorewood residents.
b.   Convince coffee shops in Shorewood to be more bike friendly (establish express "biker only" lines?).
3.       So as to promote economic development in Shorewood:  work to have the Shorewood Milwaukee River Site (the vacant former River Brook Restaurant/Milwaukee PC site) a “green office park” that provides good jobs to persons who specifically want to work there because of its location on the OLT, and a close location to good housing and schools.
4.       So as to improve the OLT: 
a.       Flood damage on the OLT repaired.
b.      Support the addition of a bike path on the Hoan Bridge.
c.       Work to facilitate the construction of the OLT north from Shorewood border approximately 3.5 miles along the abandoned rail corridor, so it links up in Brown Deer Park with the connecting trail to the Ozaukee Interurban Trail.
d.      Lighting on the OLT (although several attendees expressed opposition to this idea). 
5.       So as to make it easier and safer to bike in Shorewood:
a.     Encourage the Village Bike Plan to include Bike lanes on: 
                                                               i.      Edgewood Avenue;
                                                             ii.      Downer Avenue;
                                                            iii.      Oakland Avenue;
                                                           iv.      Lake Drive.
b.      Consider whether the sidewalk on the East side of Lake Drive, could be redeveloped so as to no longer be a sidewalk, but instead to be an asphalt bike and pedestrian trail. 
6.       So as to promote economic development in the Village and so as to improve the OLT:
a.       When Wilson Drive is completed, if commercial space is added on the West side of Wilson Drive, work to have part of the space be a bike store (so it’s on the OLT), and work to have a pub or “beer garden” that has a deck that fronts on the OLT. 
b.      Convince local businesses (e.g., Culver’s, Harry’s, Sendik’s, etc.), to pay for and get recognition on “Welcome to Shorewood” wayfaring signs on the OLT, at three locations:  (i) facing south on the OLT, at the Spector Field; (ii) facing south on the OLT, just south of Capitol Drive; and (iii) facing north on the OLT, just north of Capitol Drive.
7.       To promote biking in Shorewood generally (especially by kids):
a.       Promote more biking to school by students.
b.      Convince Culver’s that it should have a promotion whereby any two kids who show up wearing bike helmets, get “two for the price of one” kid’s cones.
c.       Bike-in-movies at the Shorewood High School.
d.      Get bike racks added in front of Three Lions Pub.
e.      Fix pot holes on the streets.
f.        “Sunday Parkways” (also called "Cyclovias") on the north end of Oakland, or on Maryland, or on Murray.
g.       Encourage the Village to build more asphalt roads, and fewer concrete roads in the Village. 
h.      Print and distribute “Bike More in 2012” GSB yard signs.
i.         Print and distribute small clear “Would this Trip be Better by Bike?” car windshield stickers (kind of like the clear cling on stickers that people put on their car windshields to remind them when they need to change their oil). 
j.    Greater Shorewood Bikers should hold a monthly meeting, at the Three Lions Pub, or some other venue in the Village.   

If you have additional ideas, or thoughts about the above ideas, please be sure to send an email to me ( or Dave Waters (, or post a comment to this blog entry.   Thanks.   (Sandie)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Bike Party!

Greater Shorewood Bikers are hosting a gathering to celebrate Shorewood’s winning the coveted Bicycle Friendly Community designation from the League of American Bicyclists.  The party is on Tuesday, September 27th, starting at 8:00 pm at the Three Lions Pub (4515 North Oakland Avenue).  At the event:

·         See the unveiling of the Village’s new BFC Signs (scheduled to appear)!
·         Talk with the guy who is drafting the Village’s new master bike plan (and give your input)!
·         Meet Village Officials behind recent Shorewood bike improvements!
·         Hobnob with fellow bikers!
·         Meet (and buy beer for) the leaders of Greater Shorewood Bikers!
·         Drink tasty beverages!

All this and more, next Tuesday!  All bikers welcome.  (Black shorts optional, racing medals may be worn).  (Sandie)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Shorewood Wins Bicycle Friendly Community Designation

The League of American Bicyclists announced today that Shorewood has been designated as a Bicycle Friendly Community. 
Shorewood is the first and only village in the State of Wisconsin to earn the BFC award.  All other Wisconsin BFCs (Milwaukee, Madison, Eau Claire, La Crosse, and newcomer-this-year Sheboygan County) are all much larger than Shorewood.  Only a few communities nationwide with comparably-small populations have earned this recognition. 
Almost 500 communities nationwide have applied for BFC recognition, and of those, currently only 190 are designated as BFCs.  With this award, Shorewood joins such other BFCs across the country as New York, Boston, Chicago, Minneapolis, Denver, Boulder, Vail, Breckenridge, San Francisco and Palo Alto.
Getting Shorewood designated as a BFC was the first project GSB took on, and we are pleased that we have been successful, with your help, in achieving this goal.  Achieving this goal helps us advance GSB's overall mission.  A worthy goal acheived is a milestone worth commemorating, so watch here for details of the celebratory event which we are currently planning. 
We acknowledge that there is still work to do to improve Shorewood as a BFC (for instance, getting the current-existing flood-damage on the bike trail repaired).  We look forward to discussing with you at the party the ideas you have for other tasks that should be addressed to make Shorewood an even better place to bike and live.  (Sandie) 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Good news!  On Wednesday, September 14th the League of American Bicyclists will announce that Shorewood has been designated as a Bicycle Friendly Community!  Thanks to everyone who helped make the application and designation possible.  We will follow-up with further details, once we know more.  Watch this space too for details relating to a GSB Celebration (probably at Alterra or the Three Lions), that will be organizing in the next few weeks to mark the announcement.  (Sandie)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Hoan Bridge Public Meeting Heavily Attended

For details regarding the well attended Hoan Bridge Town Hall Meeting, see this article, from Wednesday's Journal Sentinel. 

Thanks much to Senator Chris Larson and Representative John Richards for organizing the meeting, and giving folks an opportunity to learn more about the issue, and a chance to address the issues. 

The crowd at the meeting was very much in favor of a pedestrian and bike trail addition to the Hoan, as part of the reconstruction project that is scheduled to start in 2013.  Many persons from Shorewood attended—including GSB Co-Peloton Leader Dr. Dave Waters, along with Alan & Sheila Freysinger, Tom Kuhlman, and Jerry Pearce.  This despite the meetings inconvenient location and time. 

The meeting was not perfect.  The format was not designed to provide a substantive discussion of trail design options, or fiscal issues.  Much speculation is occurring on the issue, until WisDOT issues the results of its study later this fall.  The room too was way too small for the meeting (there was adequate space for about 50 people, rather than the roughly 250 who showed up). 

Because of this, GSB is considering organizing a follow-up meeting on the northside of town at the issue.  Stay tuned for future updates on this issue.

Fyi, on the Bicycle Friendly Community application, we have not heard anything yet.  We expect that the results of the League’s review will be released sometime in September.  --  Sandie

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Support Bikes and Pedestrians on the Hoan Bridge!

Hey kids, do you believe the slogan "Bikes Belong"?  If so, today's a good day to give voice to that sentiment.   The WisDOT on August 23rd is participating in a town hall meeting with several Milwaukee Senators and Assemblymen to discuss the feasibility and desirability of creating a bicycle/pedestrian lane over the Hoan Bridge.  Including a safe and well-designed bike/pedestrian lane as part of the reconstruction of the Hoan will give ordinary folks an exciting and spectacularly-beautiful way to get from Downtown Milwaukee to Southshore Milwaukee.  If you've ever biked or run across one of the major bridges in N.Y. or San Francisco, you know what I'm talking about.  The Hoan is a major symbol of Milwaukee, and it sends the wrong message for bikes and pedestrians to be excluded from it.  For further information about the project/study, see this link: For details regarding the meeting and how you can submit a comment via email to express support for a new bike/pedestrian lane on the Hoan, see this link:  I hope to see you there, or if not, that you can submit a comment.  --  Sandie

Monday, July 25, 2011

Bicycle Friendly Community Application Submitted

Working in cooperation with Ericka Lang at the Village, we got the BFC application finalized and submitted to the League of American Bicyclists on time on Friday, July 22nd.  We should hear the results of the judging/review in September.  Thanks to all who have helped to advance this project.   

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Village Board Comes Through

On Monday, July 11th, the Shorewood Village Board unanimously passed a motion approving our proposal to have the Village apply to be designated as a Bicycle Friendly Community.  The application will be finalized and submitted by July 22nd.  The League of American Bicyclists reviews the hundreds of applications it recieves over the next few months, engages in follow-up interviews, and issues its decision in September.  Thanks to all who contacted Village officials to express support. 

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Twelve Simple Reasons


1.     Being designated as a Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists helps us to publicize what a wonderful, vibrant, healthy place Shorewood is to live, play, work and locate a business. 
2.     Convincing others that Shorewood is a wonderful, vibrant, healthy place to live, play, work and locate a business helps us to retain and attract residents, employers and businesses.
3.     There are currently only four Wisconsin communities designated as BFCs (Milwaukee, Madison, La Crosse and Eau Claire), and a BFC designation would help our community differentiate Shorewood from our competition.  If we are designated as a BFC, we would be the first town or village in Wisconsin to win that designation.
4.     There is no application fee for us to apply for the BFC recognition.
5.     If we obtain a BFC designation, the League of American Bicyclists provides us at no charge road signs to promote the recognition, and the League and the Bicycle Federation of Wisconsin publicize our designation on their website and in press releases.
6.     Shorewood should be able to obtain a BFC designation, because as a bike town, we’ve got a lot going for us already:
a.    Shorewood--situated as it is between Lake Michigan and the Milwaukee River--is one of the best places to bike in Wisconsin, if not the World;
b.    Shorewood has 5.7 miles of paved bike paths total (2.3 miles of bike/pedestrian trails, and 3.4 miles of marked on-road bike paths), plus roughly 1 mile of unpaved informal single track bike paths along the river – an extraordinary number of miles of bike paths for a village of our size;
c.    Shorewood has recently made an important investment in improving its bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure through the construction of a new and popular bicycle and pedestrian bridge across Capitol Drive;
d.    Over 2 miles of the beautiful Oak Leaf Trail, one of the World’s best bike paths, travels through Shorewood;
e.    The Oak Leaf Trail and Lake Drive, coupled with the Village’s close proximity to downtown Milwaukee, makes Shorewood an ideal place to live if one wants to bike to work in downtown Milwaukee; and
f.     The Village’s intelligent design and compact size make it possible to bike with relative ease to schools, grocery stores, bars, coffee shops, restaurants, bike shops, flower stores, houses-of-worship, gyms, pools, beaches, parks, places-of-employment and just about anyplace one wants or needs to go in the Village.
7.     Shorewood is the home to some great bike-related events, including the June Shorewood Criterium Cycling Classic, the annual Estabrook Park Cyclocross Tournament, and our Fourth of July Parade (which prominently features cyclists and future cyclists of all ages). 
8.     The process of applying and/or obtaining a BFC designation should help to promote more biking in Shorewood, and more biking in Shorewood is good, because biking helps:
a.     to promote healthier kids;
b.     to contribute to adult physical fitness;
c.     to promote strong families;
d.     to get kids outdoors;
e.     to decrease traffic congestion;
f.      to reduce pollution;
g.     to reduce demand for foreign oil;
h.     to save money;
i.      to reduce demand for auto parking spaces;
j.      to lower stress;
k.     to reduce depression;
l.      to decrease obesity;
m.    to fight heart disease;
n.     to fight cancer;
o.     to fight stroke;
p.     to fight the growing diabetes epidemic;
q.     to decrease rates of smoking; and
r.      to decrease crime.
(See for full citations to the numerous research studies that show the benefits that bicycles provide to individuals and communities. )
9.     If we apply, and the League of American Bicyclists declines this year to grant our application, the League provides the Village a “roadmap” of specific things we can do to improve our bike infrastructure, our bike regulations/protection/enforcement, and our bike related programs and events.
10.   The future belongs to communities that are pedestrian and bicycle friendly – applying for the BFC designation helps Shorewood get to where we want and need to be. 
11.   The League of American Bicyclists currently ranks Wisconsin as the third most bicycle-friendly state in the United States (Wisconsin was ranked second behind Washington State for the last 3 years, but in 2011 slipped to third behind Maine, primarily due to some recent decisions made by the new administration), and Shorewood’s becoming a BFC can help Wisconsin advance its position relative to other states. 
12.   Because WFB isn’t doing it (and likely couldn’t win the designation, if it did apply)!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Welcome to our new under-construction blog. Greater Shorewood Bikers is an informally-organized group of persons who bike in Shorewood, Wisconsin. Our mission is to make Shorewood an even better place to bike than it is now, and to encourage more biking by Shorewood residents. Our first objective toward achieving that mission is to prepare and submit an application to have Shorewood designated as a Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists. The Bicycle Friendly Community Campaign is an awards program recognizing municipalities that actively support bicycling. How does a municipality do that? A Bicycle Friendly Community provides safe accommodation for cycling and encourages its residents to bike for transportation and recreation. Communities that are bicycle-friendly are seen as places with a high quality of life. This often translates into increased property values, business growth and increased tourism. Such communities are places where people feel safe and comfortable riding their bikes for fun, fitness, and transportation. With more people bicycling, communities experience reduced traffic demands, improved air quality and greater physical fitness.  These are all benefits we'd like to see occur in Shorewood.  We are just getting started with our work on the application, and as we make additional progress, we will post additional information here.  If you have questions, you can contact me directly at Thanks for your interest.