Friday, May 18, 2012

GSB Host Trail Magic On The OLT

GSB members Tina Holan, Carsten Rou, Gary Johnson, Mara Kuhlman, Sandie Pendleton, Tom Bachhuber, Scott Holan and Dave Waters (among others) enjoying a beautiful day and a cold beverage or so at GSB's first annual OLT Trail Magic Event.  Celebrating the last day of the official Bike to Work Week, GSB greeted and refreshed some 100 bike commuters as they headed home (or headed out) on Friday evening, on the OLT at the Shorewood/Milwaukee border.  (Photo Credit, Tom Kuhlman)

To celebrate the end of Bike to Work, GSB organized and hosted a trail magic event on the Oak Leaf Trail, on Friday, May18th.  This is the first time we've put on a bike commuter recognition event, and I'm pleased to report that it went well.  So many cyclists stopped by, we ran out of beer.  Thanks to all who helped out and who stopped by.  We'll do another one, sometime in the future.  (Kahuna)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

A Good Reason To Bike To Work This Week

So here's the grim news:

A new study led by Duke University predicts a 20 year forecast for America’s obesity epidemic.

As of today, 33% of all adults in America are obese (78 million people) and by 2030 they predict 42 % of all adults will be obese.  That means 32 million additional adults will be obese by 2030.

2/3 of all adults in America today are already overweight.

Currently 1/3 of all children and teens in the U.S. are overweight and 17% of kids and teens are obese with even higher percentages in African American and Latino children.

Currently 5 % of all adults are severely obese—(nearly 100 lbs overweight) and that will increase to 11 % by 2030.

The health problems and the cost related to the obesity epidemic are and will be astronomical.

Here's the good news:  predictions do not always come true. 

Something can be done about this.  Here's how:

Everyone needs to eat better and exercise more/be more active.

Everyone needs to eat more fruits and vegetables and decrease the amounts of snacks, junk food, and desserts they eat.

Everyone needs to limit the amount of sugar drinks they consume—soda, juices, gatoraide, etc—get them out of the house.

Watch that the portions of food you get or give are reasonable.  Don’t supersize your meals.

Easy on the seconds.  Stop eating when you are full.

Limit the amount of time watching TV, on the computer, video games, computer games, staring at your cell phone.
Be active—get exercise every day—30 to 60 minutes—doing something, anything.

Ride your bicycle.

Bike to Work Week is May 14th to the 18th……let’s all ride.  (David Waters)

Sunday, May 6, 2012

May Is National Bike Month

As you probably know, May is National Bike Month.  Our friends at PeopleForBikes.Org put together the below, which we are repeating here, because we think there good suggestions. 

National Bike Month is officially here! With longer, milder days, May is a perfect time to recognize bicycling for the multitude of benefits it provides – improving our health, economy, and environment. Here are three ways to make the most of this year’s National Bike Month:
1)     Go for a type of bike ride that you normally wouldn’t: If you’re a road rider, try a mountain bike ride. If you’ve never ridden your bike to work, give bike commuting a shot. And if the ride to work isn’t something you can tackle this year, ride your bike to run an errand you would normally do by car, even if it’s just a trip to the coffee shop or ice cream parlor. Remember—forty percent of trips Americans take are two miles or less, an easy bicycling distance.
2)     Introduce one other person to bicycling. Whether it’s your partner, a coworker, a family member, or just a friend, help someone find a bike and go for a fun ride. Bicycling is a pretty amazing thing, right? Why not encourage someone else to discover the activity that brings you so much happiness.
3)     Participate in one or more National Bike Month events. A list of community rides can be found at the League of American Bicyclists, and here are some key national events:
• National Bike to School Day (May 9)
• CycloFemme, the International Day of Women’s Bicycling (May 13)
• National Bike to Work Week (May 14-18)
• National Bike to Work Day (May 18)
• National Bike Challenge (May 1-August 31)
This May and this summer should be an amazing time for bicycling in America. An increasing percentage of our national leaders recognize bicycling as a simple solution for transportation challenges, jobs and economic development, and health and obesity issues. Communities are investing in bike lanes and paths more than ever, helping bicycling to become safer and stress-free. We encourage you to take advantage of these new places to ride by participating in National Bike Month!

Friday, May 4, 2012

GSB Launches "Go By Bike" Campaign

In celebration of National Bike Month, and to promote National Bike to Work Week, GSB has launched its "Go by Bike" campaign.  If you drive on Capitol Drive, you'll  see the large 14' x 6' banner we've erected just west of the OLT/Capitol Drive Bridge, which says "Join the Movement, Go by Bike".  This is part of our mission, to encourage folks (as they are able) to leave their cars at home, and instead use their bikes to get to work, to get to stores, and for exercise and pleasure.  Thanks very much to our local business sponsors on this project:  Alterra Coffee, Rainbow Jersey Bicycles, PNC Bank, The Three Lions Pub, The City Market, North Star American Bistro, Design Group Three, CYGA cycling & yoga.  When you're in one of those fine establishments this month, mention you saw the banner with their name on it, and thank them.

Why is more biking in Shorewood and the surrounding area a good thing?  Because: 

  1. Biking helps:

    • to promote healthier kids;
    • to contribute to adult physical fitness;
    • to promote strong families;
    • to get kids outdoors;
    • to increase kids’ independence and levels of self-reliance;
    • to decrease traffic congestion;
    • to reduce pollution;
    • to reduce demand for foreign oil;
    • to save money;
    • to reduce demand for motor vehicle parking spaces;
    • to lower stress;
    • to reduce depression;
    • to decrease obesity;
    • to fight heart disease;
    • to fight cancer;
    • to fight stroke;
    • to fight the growing diabetes epidemic;
    • to decrease rates of smoking;
    • to raise property values; and
    • to decrease crime.  (See websites like or for more details and full citations to the numerous research studies that show the benefits that bicycles provide to individuals, kids, families and communities.) 

  2. Being designated and known as a Bicycle Friendly Community ("BFC") helps Shorewood publicize what a wonderful, vibrant, healthy place Shorewood is to live, play, work and locate a business. Being such a place, and convincing others that Shorewood is such a place, helps us to retain and attract residents, employers and businesses. Educated, creative and talented people theses days tend to seek out communities where there is more biking, that have good bike infrastructure, and that are bicycle friendly.
  3. Bike-wise, Shorewood already has a lot going for it already:
    • Geographically, situated as it is between Lake Michigan and the Milwaukee River and with a relatively flat terrain, Shorewood is one of the best places to bike in Wisconsin, if not the World (and we're modest too);
    • Little Shorewood (roughly only a mile square in area) 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;
    • 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;
    • Over 2 miles of the beautiful Oak Leaf Trail—one of the World’s best bike paths (did we mention we're modest?)—travels through Shorewood;
    • The Oak Leaf Trail and Lake Drive, coupled with the Village’s close proximity to downtown Milwaukee, makes Shorewood an ideal place to locate one’s family, if one wants easy access to great schools/neighborhoods, yet still to work in downtown Milwaukee;
    • The Village borders the campus of a major world class university (we're with you on this Chancelor Lovell), which makes Shorewood a highly convenient place for students, employees and faculty of the University to live, and then bike to UWM. 
    • 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; and
    • Shorewood has the densest population level of any municipality in Wisconsin, and that density is both a blessing (you're never far from where you need to go), and a challenge (parking can sometimes be hard to find)—bicycling fits very well into the Shorewood environment.
    • Shorewood is the home to some great bike-related events, including the June 21st  Shorewood Criterium Cycling Classic Race, the June 16th  “Shorewood First Ride” Program, the annual Estabrook Park Cyclocross Tournament, and our Fourth of July Parade (which prominently features cyclists and future cyclists of all ages).
We know the above and the banner is probably not going to result in Capitol Drive tomorrow suddenly becoming a bike boulevard.  But we do hope the banner and the above will move the needle a little, and encourage more people, more of the time, to leave their cars at home, and get on their wonderful, trusty bikes instead.  Join the Movement, Go by Bike!  (Kahuna)