Vernon and North Okanagan's Team Leaders' Workshop on April 29 was a great success with over 21 team leaders present. There is still time register individually or form a team, just register on-line: www.biketowork.ca. Team Leaders can pick-up their free T-shirt and promo pack at the Community Services Building front reception (3001-32 Avenue). By registering with Bike to Work and School you have a chance to win one of many great prizes, including the Grand Prize:Prague to Budapest Cycling Trip for 2sponsored by Exodus Travels.
All cyclists of all levels can enhance their safety and practical cycling skills by participating in the Bike Skills and Safety workshops ($20 plus applicable taxes). Additional safety tips can be found on the BC SAFE: ICBC Safety Tips. Please encourage and share this information with all your fellow teammates/cyclists, friends and families.
Vernon and North Okanagan will kick off Bike to Work Week on Sunday, May 24thwith the Community Bike Festival in Polson Park from 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. This free event offers tons of resources and fun for cyclists and families, including:
Youth Bike Building Scavenger Hunt
Carnival Bike activity games
Bike check station by Venture Training
Helmet Check Station and Bike Skills Course by Community Policing
Bike colouring and decorating station with a bike parade at 2:45 p.m.
Mayor's and Media's Relay Challenge (2:00 p.m.)
Free entertainment from Kiki the Eco Elf
Snacks provided by Cob's Bread and Bean to Cup fresh brewed coffee.
A heartfelt thank you our wonderful volunteers and local sponsors: CUPE 626, VantageOne Credit Union, Sun.FM and Kiss.FM, and Vernon Community Policing.
Three elementary schools Alexis Park, Ellison and Ecole Beairsto will be celebrating Bike to School by hosting a celebration station at their school (see below). All students that bike to walk to school are eligible to win prizes. The celebration stations will open at 7:45 a.m. until the school bell rings!
School Celebration Dates:
Monday, May 25, 7:45 Elision Elementary
Thursday, May 28, 7:45 am Alexis Park Elementary and
Friday, Ecole Beairsto School.
If your school is interested in participating in Bike to School please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Heads Up Cyclists! Be Seen, Be Safe!
City of Vernon’s Heads Up campaign is asking drivers, pedestrians and cyclists to keep their heads up as it is a
shared responsibility to prevent collisions.
Be lit! Wear or carry a light at dusk, in low light or poor weather.
Wear white, bright, reflective clothing.
Cross with care. Make eye contact with drivers and wait until traffic has stopped before you cross.
Pay attention. Avoid distractions like listening to music.
Be predictable. Use bike lanes, shoulders and yield to pedestrians on multi-use paths.
Heads up at intersections!
Stop, look and listen! Look both ways.
Only cycle in crosswalks that have cycle signals or signs with the bike image included.
Cycling in Vernon
The City of Vernon is committed to making cycling easier for residents and visitors by providing an extensive network of cycling routes around the city and by promoting safe and healthy travel.
As a follow-up to the East Hill Active Travel Plan, Council directed staff to apply and receive a grant from Healthy Communities BC to gain additional community input for the Pedestrian Cycling Master Plan and Transportation Plan, which will become a part of the Official Community Plan. The Healthy Communities Capacity Building Fund is a partnership between BC Healthy Communities Society and Healthy Families BC. This partnership supports local government engagement and partnerships across sectors for creating healthier communities, and provides learning opportunities, resources, and leading-edge practices for collaborative local action.
After consulting with the public and key stakeholders during 15 community input sessions in 2013 and 2014, the City of Vernon was able to consult the public on best route mapping for cycling and walking and finalize the Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan in August 2014. In September of 2014 this plan was endorsed by Council for inclusion in the Master Transportation Plan, currently under development. To view the Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan webpage, click here.
In November 2014, the best routes maps for cycling were finalized and printed in late December. These maps can viewed here. Free copies of the community identified cycling map are located at Vernon City Hall (3400-30th Street) and Community Services Building (3001-32nd Avenue), the public library, the Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Vernon Association, Skyride and Sun Country Cycle shops and at your Vernon coffee shops.Free copies of the community identified cycling map are located at Vernon City Hall (3400-30th Street) and Community Services Building (3001-32nd Avenue), the public library, the Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Vernon Association, Skyride and Sun Country Cycle shops, the Tourist Information Centre and at your Vernon coffee shops.
A big heartfelt thank you to Skyride and Sun Country Cycle shops for sponsoring the printing of Vernon's Community Bike Map. The best routes maps for walking will follow once the downtown way finding project is completed.
Be as visible as possible to others. Be lit in the day and night.
Learn the skills needed to control your bike.
Cycle in traffic safely and predictably.
Know and obey the rules of the road.
In addition to these principles, there are a number of specific tips for safe cycling:
Always be visible to drivers by wearing bright reflective and coloured clothing (white, red, orange, yellow, fluorescent colours), particularly at night. In the summer, wear a light breathable reflective vest. In the cooler months, use a reflective jacket.
Make sure you have a bright white light on front of your bike (or use a head lamp) and use red flashing lights at the rear of your bike (attached to your helmet, bike post and/or rear panniers)
Always cycle on the right side of the road in cycle lanes when possible or cycle on multi-use paths
Yield to pedestrians, as they have the right of way at intersections and on multi-use paths. Use a bike bell to alert pedestrians when you are approaching them. Ring once at a distance from them, and again as you pass.
Wear an approved bicycle helmet that fits properly, is in good condition and approved. Hockey helmets and other types of sports helmets are not designed to protect against cycling injuries.
For additional resources please visit:
Bike Sense Manual
BikeSense has been written and reviewed by professional cycling skills instructors, cycling advocacy organizations, bicycle trained police officers and provincial authorities responsible for making and interpreting our traffic laws.
Pathways and Safety
Tips on how to ride your bicycle safely on pathways shared by pedestrians, rollerbladers and other users. (Courtesy of City of Kelowna Smart Trips)
Kids and Bicycle Safety
Bicycle riding is fun, healthy, and a great way for kids to feel independent. This guide provides safe riding tips for kids and summarizes the rules of the road.
Cycling Safely in a Roundabout(the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, Government of BC)
Roundabouts are becoming more and more common in Vernon. The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure,Government of BC website offers a good graphic design as well as video options for cars, cyclists and pedestrians. They describe a roundabout as a circular intersection without stop signs or electronic signals. Traffic flows counter-clockwise around a central island. Roundabouts are growing in popularity across Canada and the U.S.; Roundabouts reduce vehicle speeds through an intersection; and as a result improve safety for all road users - pedestrians; cyclists and motorists.
HUB: Your Cycling Connection
HUB is a non-profit society that works to address cycling issues in the Metro Vancouver area. Their website is a useful resource that provides links to even more information about cycling.
Why the Focus on cycling?
During community consultation for various projects in recent years, Vernon residents have consistently expressed a desire to ride bicycles more, but have SAFETY CONCERNS. The City of Vernon has responded by making cycling a high priority in all of its transportation plans.
Benefits of cycling:
No greenhouse gas emissions
No sticker shock at the pump
More efficient use of road space
Higher levels of fitness and lower levels of stress