This year’s Shasta County bike commute challenge could not have had much worse weather. Yet participation in the event was far better than ever before, as 34 teams with about 250 individual riders logged more than double the 2010 event’s mileage.
Although the final few days were quite pleasant, the week of May 15 (bike commute week) began with four days of rain, wind and temperatures 20 to 30 degrees below average. That didn’t stop the cycling diehards from making the rounds on two-wheels. Word is that Ken Frank from the City of Redding commuted 22 miles in the rain one day. I know, that’s nuts. But it’s also commendable.
Ultimately, the City of Redding team racked up the most miles, followed by first-time entrant Nichols, Melburg & Rossetto in second place, and defending champion Shasta College in third place. Participants covered 6,398 miles and, according to organizers at Healthy Shasta, saved 305 gallons of gasoline. Last year, 25 teams with about 150 riders covered a bit more than 3,000 miles. Clearly, promoters of the event are on to something. No doubt, the better access across the Sacramento River provided by the new Cypress Avenue Bridge and the Dana-to-Downtown bike path provided a boost.
Turtle Bay Exploration Park received a commendation for promoting the event with a clinic for employees, an “energizer” station with refreshments for commute week participants, and social rides after work.
In addition, sponsors Sports LTD, ESP Outdoor, The Bike Shop, Chain Gang, Nick Webb, John Waldrop and Healthy Shasta gave away 37 prizes, including $100 bike shop gift certificates, bike fenders, panniers and headlights.
Congrats to everyone who participated, and count on this event only getting bigger in future years.
Today’s A La Carte menu:
Bus of foods … The “Stuff the Bus” food drive is this Friday, June 3, with 13 drop-off locations from Marysville to Redding. KRCR News Channel 7, Rabobank, the Salvation Army, KSHA Radio, RABA and the B-Line are heading up the effort to fill the shelves of food pantries in the region. Click here to find out how you may contribute.
Child’s play … T.R. Woods Memorial Park on Royal Oaks Drive in Redding’s Sunset Terrace neighborhood has a new playground thanks to the efforts of dozens of volunteers, many sponsors and organizers Active 20-30 Club of Redding and Redding West Rotary.
At 5 p.m. this Saturday, June 4, Everyone who had even a small hand in the project is invited for the official grand opening and barbecue. UPDATE: Because of threatening weather, the grand opening has been moved to 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 8.
Perfect day for a picnic … Redding’s Martin Luther King Jr. Multicultural Center and Shasta County Baha’is are hosting an Amity Day Picnic from 2 to 5 p.m. this Sunday, June 5, at the MLK Center, 1815 Sheridan Street. Music, games for both kids and adults, crafts and burgers are on the menu. You’re asked to bring a “cultural potluck side dish” and a chair or blanket to sit on. If the rain persists, the gathering will simply move inside. Call the MLK Center for more information, (530) 225-4375.
Bridge out … Highway 263 (AKA North Main Street) just north of Yreka will be closed for about 60 days starting Monday, June 6, so that Caltrans may partially remove and replace the Pioneer Bridge over the Shasta River. Property owners will have access, but everyone else needs to use Interstate 5. Caltrans promises to have message boards and detour signs in place.
Paul Shigley is a freelance journalist based in Western Shasta County, CA, and wonders if fried pickle chips qualify as a cultural potluck side dish. He may be reached at email@example.com.
A News Cafe, founded in Shasta County by Redding, CA journalist Doni Greenberg, is the place for people craving local Northern California news, commentary, food, arts and entertainment.