Boise & Garden City

Boise Bike Week celebrates two-wheeled transportation

Formal rides from Boise neighborhoods to farmers markets Saturday and a commuter sendoff at Boise City Hall Monday morning launched the week of events.

Through Saturday, bicyclists will be treated to bike rides, educational classes and social events. Bicyclists are encouraged to ride their bikes to work or school on Friday, and the week culminates with Saturday afternoon’s annual Pedal Power Parade through downtown Boise and a block party.

“It’s a great way to promote cycling in the Treasure Valley,” said Joe Bruce, membership coordinator for the Boise Valley Cycling Alliance.

On Monday, the Dirt Dolls woman’s cycling group will lead an hourlong ride from Camel’s Back Park, 1200 Heron St., beginning at 5:45 p.m. The group’s weekly rides are normally restricted to women and girls, but as part of Boise Bike Week, men will be allowed to participate in Monday’s ride.

At the same time, a RAT ride — ride around town — will be held to highlight the new permanent bike lane on Capitol Boulevard. Meet at the Highlands Hollow Brewhouse at 2455 Harrison Hollow Lane, at 5:45 p.m.

A bike commuter education class, along with a separate introduction to road riding will be held Tuesday, with an adaptive bike fair, a children’s mountain bike clinic and beginning mountain bike ride held Thursday. A BMX new rider clinic and a later BMX race for charity will be held Saturday, along with a bike rodeo.

The full schedule of Boise Bike Week events can be viewed here.

Boise Bike Week was founded in 2003 by cycling enthusiasts Ryan Henbest and Tracy Wilson. The Boise Valley Cycling Alliance took over as organizers in 2007.

Participants at Monday’s commuter event spoke of growth, both of the Bike Week and of Boise cycling in general.

Jean Cullen lives in the North End and regularly rides her bicycle to work downtown. She moved to Boise 15 years ago from Kansas City and began commuting to work almost immediately.

“Kansas City is a good bike town for its size but Boise is even better,” she said.

Lisa Brady, the president of the cycling alliance who traded in her car for a bicycle in 2010, said Boise Bike Week has expanded every year in both participants and number of events. The alliance encourages improvements in bicycling infrastructure, advocates for policy changes that benefit riders and provides education on a cycling issues.

“We like people to have fun on their bicycles and this is a great event for that,” Brady said.

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