Each, year hundreds of Vernon and North Okanagan cyclists register for Bike to Work and School Week. This year we saw an increase in the number of commuters that choose cycling for everyday transportation. From May 27 – June 2, 1,788 riders made 3,156 trips by bicycle, travelling over 67,368 km and saving 14 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs). Kilometers traveled by bike nearly tripled over 2018. Provincially, over 55,969 riders from across BC participated in Bike to Work and School Week, cycling a total of 2,945,372 km and saving 638 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.
The primary goal of Bike to Work and School Week is to introduce people of all ages to try cycling to work, to school, to go shopping, or out for dinner, and to continue cycling in the future. The program encourages people to opt out of vehicles and opt in for cycling for everyday transportation. Cycling especially offers the added benefits of escaping traffic, improving air quality, reducing congestion on our roadways, and improving personal health.
A total of 244 local teams participated from a variety of sectors including education, health, government, non-profit, industry and the general public. Staff and students from five local elementary and secondary schools participated in Bike to School Week.
Top Workplace Teams:
- City Hall Velocity: 44 riders, 1370 km, 297 kg GHGs saved
- Kal Tire: 27 riders, 1039 km, 225 kg GHGs saved
- BC Hydro: 13 riders, 617 km, 134 kg GHGs saved
Top Community Teams:
- Vernon Vortex: 18 riders, 565 km, 122 kg of GHGs saved
- Martens: 4 riders, 559 km, 121 kg of GHGs saved
- Fabulous Wheels: 5 riders, 329 km, 71 kg of GHGs saved
North Okanagan’s top rider was Ray Brown of Armstrong who logged over 950 km. The rider with the most trips logged was the City of Vernon’s Angela Broadbent who made 22 trips by bike. The local grand prize, $500 to a bike shop of the winner’s choice, was won by Scott Gentes.
Bike to Work and School Week would not be possible without the generous support of our community. The City of Vernon would like to thank the over 30 local businesses and organizations that supported Bike to Work and School Week through sponsorship, in-kind contributions, and prize donations and all of the Team Leaders who champion cycling in their workplaces, families, and social groups.
Bike to Work and School Week is organized across British Columbia by GoByBike BC Society. By securing and sharing resources, GoByBike BC helps communities throughout British Columbia deliver successful events that encourage people to use bicycles for everyday transportation in a supportive and fun environment. For more information about Bike to Work and School Week visit www.biketowork.ca/north-okanagan.
*** photo name is in bold with corresponding photo blurb next to it. Photos by Heath Fletcher, Sproing Creative
By the Numbers: Local and Provincial Participation
Nature’s Fare Market Celebration Station: Neil Sawatzky of Olympia Cycle and Ski performs bike checks at the Nature’s Fare Market Celebration Station.
Naked Pig Kitchen Celebration: Cans of refreshing kombucha were handed out to cyclists provided by The Naked Pig Kitchen.
Pancake breakfast kickoff: Cyclists fueled up on pancakes at Monday’s kick off celebration station.
Mom with child: Mother and Son cycling downtown after stopping in for treats at the Natures Fair Celebration station